Cheez-it Macaroni and Cheese

The best Cheez-It Macaroni and Cheese recipe that will blow your mind!  It’s perfectly creamy, cheesy and unique because of the crunchy cheez-it topping baked right on top. 

Cheez-it Macaroni and Cheese Recipe.  Creamy mac & cheese dinner topped with cheez-it topping instead of bread crumbs.  Great dinner, lunch, or potluck idea.

This is one of my favorite mac and cheese recipes and I saved the best for last here in my childhood food favorites week!  I really hope you all enjoyed all of the recipes this week – I know I have enjoyed eating them!  This one I’m sharing today is a double whammy childhood favorite:  mac & cheese (which I was completely obsessed with as a child and had a friend remind me of said obsession this week)… and Cheez-Its!  I literally ate them like it was my job growing up.  Even when I moved out on my own, I had a consistent stash of them in my pantry.  So, I combined my love of Cheez-its and Mac ‘n Cheese together in this recipe today.

Several summers ago, I went to this hole-in-the-wall restaurant for lunch with some friends here in Rochester.  I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw “Cheez-it Mac & Cheese” on the menu!  I think that was the fastest decision I ever made at a restaurant when it came to what I was going to order.  The mac & cheese was awesome (obviously that was not in question), and I thought that was just genius to incorporate my beloved cheese crackers into a macaroni and cheese dish.  That restaurant has since closed down, and I made it my mission to recreate the cheesy goodness at home so I didn’t have to go without it the rest of my life.  Like mac & cheese NEEDS more cheese added to the top….I know, but trust me – this is good!

This mac & cheese recipe is not overly creamy and has just the right amount of cheese and milk. It is baked to perfection while the crunch of the Cheez-Its adds a nice crisp topping and was a delicious alternative to using bread crumbs on top.  You will never go back to bread crumbs! :)

(Here’s what I posted the last 4 days:  Frosted Animal Sugar CookiesHomemade SpaghettiOsOreo Peanut Butter Swirl White Chocolate Fudge, Cake Batter Rice Krispie Treats.)  Have a great weekend!

Cheez-it Macaroni and Cheese Recipe.  Creamy mac & cheese dinner topped with cheez-it topping instead of bread crumbs.  Great dinner, lunch, or potluck idea.

Cheez-it Macaroni and Cheese.  Creamy mac & cheese dinner topped with cheez-it topping instead of bread crumbs.  Great dinner, lunch, or potluck meal.

Cheez-it Macaroni and Cheese
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
The best Cheez-It Macaroni and Cheese recipe! It's perfectly creamy, cheesy and unique because of the crunchy cheez-it topping baked right on top.
Ingredients
  • 1 16 ounce box shells (or your pasta of choice)
  • ½ cup butter
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 16 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 cups Cheez-It crackers, crushed
Instructions
  1. Cook pasta to al dente according to package directions (you will be baking it later).
  2. Drain pasta and set aside.
  3. Melt butter in saucepan over low heat; whisk in flour, and cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute or until mixture is smooth.
  4. Increase heat to medium; gradually whisk in 2 cups milk, and cook, whisking constantly, 5 minutes or until mixture is thickened and bubbly.
  5. Stir in cheese, stirring until cheese is melted.
  6. Remove pan from heat.
  7. Stir pasta and ground black pepper into cheese mixture; spoon into a lightly greased 13 x 9 inch baking dish or a 3-quart casserole dish.
  8. Spread crushed Cheez-It crackers evenly on top.
  9. Bake uncovered at 375°F for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Enjoy!
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Author:Ashley

These are a few of my favorite things: cooking, baking, Broadway musicals, cruises, Disney World, Christmas, storms, 80's and country music, and my favorite pastime has always been baseball. Go Yankees!

29 Responses to “Cheez-it Macaroni and Cheese”

  1. January 24, 2014 at 7:16 AM #

    This is dangerous! Even now, my love of Cheez Its knows no bounds. I’m going to have to try this when we have people over, because otherwise I can’t be trusted not to eat the whole thing!!

    • January 24, 2014 at 12:03 PM #

      I definitely had more than my fair share! Lol

  2. January 24, 2014 at 7:59 AM #

    Hey! I love this idea not that we have these crackers here in Spain but I´m sure I can find a substitue :-) This recipe reminds me of my childhood, my aunt used to make a bean casserole with crushed up cheese & onion potato chips on top.. it was devine!! Have a great weekend! Xx

    • January 24, 2014 at 12:04 PM #

      That casserole sounds amazing! You should make it and share the recipe with all of us. Just saying

  3. January 24, 2014 at 9:26 AM #

    Wow Ashley! This looks really good. We love cheez-its and mac and cheese. Great idea combining the two together.!

    • January 24, 2014 at 12:04 PM #

      Thank you Cindy!! It’s definitely a “once on a while” meal.

  4. January 24, 2014 at 9:30 AM #

    My toddler is a mac and cheese connoisseur and would absolutely love this!

    • January 24, 2014 at 12:05 PM #

      I think any Mac n cheese lover can get behind this!! Thanks for the comment!

  5. January 24, 2014 at 9:39 AM #

    Your comment on my blog said you recently posted Cheez-It Macaroni and Cheese . . . so needless to say, HERE I AM! :D This looks so yummy. My mom makes a hashed brown casserole for church lunches sometimes and I’m pretty sure she uses Cheez-Its on top.

    • January 24, 2014 at 12:07 PM #

      A hash brown casserole with cheez-it’s!?! Sounds awesome!

  6. January 24, 2014 at 9:44 AM #

    WOW! This looks and sounds like comfort food at its finest! I also now have a major craving for Cheez-Its. I haven’t eaten them in years, but they are SO good!

    • January 24, 2014 at 12:07 PM #

      This was the first time I have bought them in years! I fear I rekindled the love. Lol

  7. January 24, 2014 at 12:02 PM #

    Seriously where do you come up with this stuff?! I need you to come live at my house and cook for me and my husband. I’d get really fat but at least I’d be happy. You have the best food ideas everrrr. First animal cookie cookies and now cheez it mac and cheese?! ahhh

    • January 24, 2014 at 12:08 PM #

      Ok you just made my day with that comment!!! Thanks girl!!

  8. January 24, 2014 at 7:16 PM #

    Who doesn’t adore macaroni and cheese, especially as delicious as this! :D

    Cheers
    CCU

  9. January 25, 2014 at 8:32 AM #

    I love the crunchy top! There’s not much better than Mac & Cheese on a cold day! I can just imagine biting into this creamy, crunchy version! Looks great!

  10. January 25, 2014 at 7:13 PM #

    YUM!!!

  11. January 25, 2014 at 7:34 PM #

    What a fun idea for mac and cheese topping!

  12. January 26, 2014 at 5:54 AM #

    Those crackers sound much better than regular bread indeed! This sounds delish! xx

  13. January 26, 2014 at 1:11 PM #

    Interesting recipe! I never thought to use Cheez-its in mac ‘n cheese. Looks totally wonderful — thanks so much!

  14. January 26, 2014 at 2:08 PM #

    Perfection. Never thought of using this as the top crunch, but what a amazing idea…

  15. January 26, 2014 at 2:25 PM #

    aaaaand I’ll be making this asap!!!

  16. January 26, 2014 at 7:34 PM #

    Yum. I can taste it already. Cheddar cheese heaven!

    My favorite cheez-it flavor was pepper jack. :D

  17. January 27, 2014 at 4:05 AM #

    Whoa, this is insane! (in a good way) I love mac & cheese AND I love cheez-its, obviously this is a match made in heaven. Perfect game day food for sure!

  18. January 27, 2014 at 10:54 AM #

    Such a great idea! Mac and cheese is one of my favorite comfort foods, but never thought of putting cheez-its on top. Love it!

    • January 27, 2014 at 11:27 AM #

      It’s the best!! Thanks, Christin!

  19. February 27, 2014 at 4:05 PM #

    6’0 260 and all Man, but tried this and Now I appreciate Mama and Grandma for teaching me skills in the kitchen. Dad taught me football, but thank God for cooking skills and Mama and G Ma for taking the time with me. This is the shizzell!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Margherita Macaroni and Cheese | Wishes and Dishes - March 6, 2014

    […] It’s just such great comfort food no matter which way you prepare it (have you tried the Cheez-It Mac & Cheese I posted a few weeks ago?) and I think it will always be my favorite meal of all […]

  2. Super Bowl Appetizer Ideas - April 16, 2014

    […] Cheez-it Macaroni and Cheese […]

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