The most kid-friendly casserole around, this cheesy mac and cheese gets perfectly toasty in the oven thanks to its fresh bread crumb topping.
Slideshow: More Macaroni and Cheese Recipes
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing
1 pound fusilli
1 quart whole milk
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
4 cups coarsely grated mild white cheddar cheese
1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs
1 tablespoon olive oil
How to Make It
Preheat the oven to 400° and butter a shallow 9-by-13-inch ceramic baking dish.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook, following the package directions, until 3 minutes shy of al dente. Drain in a colander.
Warm the milk in the microwave or in a saucepan set over medium-low heat.
In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Whisk in the flour and cook until incorporated, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the warm milk and whisk gently over medium heat until the mixture has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes.
Stir in the salt, pepper flakes, mustard and cheese. Add the pasta and toss to combine. Transfer to the prepared dish. In a small bowl, toss the breadcrumbs with the olive oil. Sprinkle over the pasta. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the pasta is tender and the topping is browned.
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