Boxed Mac n’ Cheese has been a staple for dinner for years. Whether you’re a college dormer or just an average busy individual dealing with adulthood, this has been your best friend on tired and lazy nights. While it is already an image of perfection as it is, you can upgrade your comfort food and whip up a fancy meal. This article will teach you how to spice up boxed Mac n’ Cheese and say goodbye to boring dinners! We’ve rounded up the best ways to jazz up your favourite instant food with the following ideas: adding herbs and spice, protein, sauce, vegetable, textures, and even make it as an accompaniment of another dish. Read along and learn tips on how to do it.
Add herbs and spices
Probably the easiest way on how to spice up boxed Mac n’ Cheese is to kick up the flavors with herbs and seasonings. It’s also the most affordable because you can actually pick up almost any condiment to dress up your pasta. Of the herb department, you can either use fresh or dried and they will surely give a new life to your Mac n’ Cheese. Mediterranean herbs such as oregano, marjoram, basil, and parsley or even a combination thereof gives spark to the dish. There are people who just love garlic so much they put it practically on any food. Luckily, garlic powder works well with Mac n’ Cheese. And if you’re a fan of hot and spicy stuff, chili powders and paprika will satisfy your craving.
Toss in some protein
Need extra calories for the day? Give a little effort to your instant meal by loading it with protein. In fact, if you have leftover grilled chicken from yesterday or a canned tuna in your cupboard, these will do the trick.
If you’re in the mood to move around the kitchen, jazz it up with some toasted bacons. Not only does it spring life to a lonely pasta but it also satisfies your craving because who doesn’t love bacon? We’ve also seen some recipes which have taken the ordinary Mac n’ Cheese into an entirely new level by adding meatballs, mushroom, sausage, ground beef, and barbecued meat.
Since we’re talking about the muscle-building nutrient, eggs are not to be forgotten. Have you ever heard of Mac n’ Cheese omelette? It’s basically macaroni and cheese stuffed in a huge envelope of eggs. Oh what a game changer!
There are some people who don’t think their boxed Mac n’ Cheese is cheesy enough. We don’t judge. Feel free to add more or use another type of cheese be it parmesan, mozzarella, and many others that will give you that stringy, gooey, and salty outcome.
Blend a new sauce
Tired of the usual smiling golden bowl of Mac n’ Cheese? Vivify it by blending a new sauce. There are a lot of ready-made pasta sauces that will absolutely change the way you view this ordinary dish. Of the many examples are tomato, pesto, and sriracha.
For those who prefer a creamier Mac n’ Cheese than what the box provides, try making your own. Just stir flour and salt over heated butter until smooth. Pour in milk and warm. Add cheese equivalent to the amount of your preference.
Make it healthier with vegetables
Time to debunk the myth about getting crappy nutrition out of boxed Mac n’ Cheese. We love this creative method not only because it adds nutritional value but also because it gives a vibrant touch to your dish with the introduction of colors. When we talk about how to spice up boxed Mac n’ Cheese the healthful way, the most popular are the green ones like broccoli, kale, artichoke, and celery. We also love putting carrots and bell pepper for their taste and flavour. They are mostly served in blanched form. Roasting veggies is not a bad idea also. The slightly charred and caramelized surface of the vegetables fuse well with your pasta.
Spicing up you Mac n’ Cheese with stuffed vegetables could be the best way to feed your picky kids. Just toss blanched vegetables like squash, carrots, kale, and broccoli, in a blender. Mix it well with the pasta and your kids will never know you’re outwitting them.
There may be instances when you forgot you have macaroni boiling in the pot. In the end, what you have is a mushy, paste-like Mac n’ Cheese. For those people who still find the dish golden, liven it up with crunchy textures like chopped walnuts, almonds, or pistacchios. Alternatively, you may also top it with bread crumbs or croutons for extra crisp.
Here’s a tip as well. Try baking Mac n Cheese in the oven and get the exposed surface scorched. The crunchy exterior blends well with the soft interior. Pan-searing will also do the trick.
Turn it into something else
Nothing could make Mac n’ Cheese more perfect than infusing it with an equally perfect food. Here’s what I’m trying to say. Some innovative chefs go the extra mile as giving baptizing it with a new identity such as Mac n’ Cheese balls. Just roll them into a ball and cover the surface with bread crumbs. Deep fry until a golden brown surface is achieved. What you’ll have is a crunchy, cheesy, and more sinful yet satisfying cheese balls.
You can also make Mac n’ Cheese muffins by scooping them each in muffin cups. Pop them in the oven until cheese is bubbly and gooey. Once done, cool it down until it creates a compact shape. These are perfect appetizers for parties.
How about stuffing it in a sandwich? Think of it like grilled cheese with extra calories. Melted cheese makes all the difference. Another innovative way of upgrading it to use it as pizza toppings. Don’t worry about creating so much mess in your kitchen because there are commercially available pre-made pizza dough.
Above are the suggestions on how to spice up your Mac n’ Cheese eating experience. You can mix and match vegetables, meat, and seasoning to brighten up an ordinary dish. And once you try it, there’s a fat chance you’ll never go back to eating plain boxed Mac n’ Cheese anymore.