Cook With Me @ J.R. Neighbors ~ Mac & Cheese

In honor of our Pasta Bowl campaign, Elizabethtown restaurant, J.R. Neighbors taught our Executive Director, Charles Dennis how to create one of their house special sides: Mac-n-Cheese. Follow their recipe down to the cheese, or experiment and create your own!

Cooking Equipment

  • Large pot
  • 2 quart saucepan
  • Whisk
  • Food processor
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Greased casserole dish


  • 8 oz cavatappi pasta
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 2 ⅔ cup of whole milk
  • ½ cup of smoked gouda
  • ½ cup sharp cheddar cheese
  • ½ white cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup white american cheese
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp granulated onion
  • 1 tsp aleppo pepper
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the Crumb Topping

  • 1 ½ cup croutons
  • 3 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
  • ½ tbsp aleppo pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Bring a pot of water and 2 tbsp of salt to a boil. Once boiling, add the pasta and cook for 7-8 minutes while lightly stirring. Drain and rinse and set aside. 
  3. While the pasta is cooking, set the saucepan to low-medium heat. Melt the butter completely. Whisk in the flour and cook for 3-5 minutes or until a light brown paste. Slowly whisk in the milk while stirring continuously to remove clumps. Bring to a light simmer. 
  4. Slowly add in cheeses, 1 at a time. Add the seasonings and simmer for 3-5 minutes, or until all of the cheeses have melted. 
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste, and more milk if you’d like a thinner sauce. Simmer for an additional minute for a thicker sauce. 
  6. For the crumb topping, add all ingredients to a food processor and pulse until you get a coarse, sand-like texture. 
  7. In an oven safe and greased casserole dish, add the pasta and spread out evenly. 
  8. Pour the cheese sauce over the pasta, but do not mix. 
  9. Spread the crumb mix evenly over the top. 
  10. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly.