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Mains, Sides, Vegetarian

Diner-style macaroni and cheese

Diner-style macaroni and cheese
Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times

There is something about the speed and complexity of modern life that brings a hankering for plain and simple dishes, full of the delicious smack of nostalgia. In short, we long for home cooking-or for its commercial counterpart, diner cuisine. ... Read more

Total time: 45 minutes | Serves 4 to 6


  • 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted unsalted butter
  • Dash cayenne pepper

Step 1Combine the bread crumbs, butter and pepper. Set aside.


  • 1 1/2 cups elbow macaroni
  • 2 cups shredded cheese, such as Havarti and Cheddar, mixed
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 1/3 cups milk
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • Salt, black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • Dash cayenne pepper

Step 1Prepare the macaroni according to package directions, cooking it so it's a tad on the firm side. Drain and set aside.

Step 2Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 4-quart casserole.

Step 3Toss the cooked macaroni with the cheese, eggs, milk, butter, salt and black pepper to taste, paprika and cayenne and spoon it into the casserole. Sprinkle the crumb topping evenly over the top.

Step 4Bake the macaroni until it's golden brown and bubbling on the sides, 25 to 30 minutes.


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