Everyone is looking for a bargain at the grocery store these days. The one item they are all reaching for is boxed macaroni and cheese. Why not, it’s cheap and the kids love it! If you buy the store brand or generic version, your savings will be even greater. The only problem is that the store brand is usually not as cheesy as the well known name brand,
If you are finding that your family is complaining that your bargain macaroni and cheese is a little bland, you can grab a few things out of your pantry to spice it up. You can make it cheesier, or you can add other ingredients to disguise the fact that you are serving the same old mac and cheese again.
More Cheese Please
If the family is complaining because it is just not cheesy enough, the simple solution is to add more cheese. Melt a couple of Tablespoons of butter in a small pot. Add about a cup of milk to this and a large chunk of Velveeta cheese, cut into squares. You can use a lesser priced store brand, and they’ll never know the difference.
Once your boxed macaroni and Cheese is made, pour it out onto a nice platter. Pour your cheese sauce over the top of it and then sprinkle on a few dried chives, or parsley to give it some color. Its plain old mac and cheese, but it sure looks pretty!
Tune It Up
Make a quick tuna casserole, using your boxed mac and cheese and a few inexpensive ingredients you probably have in your pantry. Boil the noodles as directed. Make sure they are good and done. Some people have a tendency to undercook the noodles. Overcooked noodles lend to a better consistency for this dish.
Drain the noodles and grate in a small onion. You can use more or less depending on your taste. Add garlic powder, according to your taste as well. Stir in one can of tuna per box of noodles. Also stir in 1 can of cream of mushroom soup, per box of noodles. Add about can of water. (This will depend on how thick the mushroom soup is. Cheaper brands tend to be thinner.)
Pour your tuna and noodles into a casserole dish and flatten it out. Sprinkle the cheese from the boxed macaroni and cheese over the top of it. Bake in a 350 degree oven for about half an hour.
Veggie Surprise Mac and Cheese
Make up 2 boxes of macaroni and cheese according to package directions. While you are doing this, cook a package of frozen California Blend (broccoli, cauliflower and carrots) vegetables according to package directions.
Butter the sides and bottom of a 9 X 13 casserole pan. Place half of the cooked macaroni and cheese in the casserole dish and spread it out. Spread the cooked California Blend across this layer of mac and cheese. Top the vegetables with the remaining macaroni and cheese. Sprinkle shredded cheese across the top. You can use any kind of shredded cheese you like.
Cover the dish with foil and bake at 350 degrees for about half an hour. Take the foil off for the last few minutes to allow the shredded cheese to brown and bubble, if you would like. Let the dish set out of the oven for several minutes before serving, and use a spatula to cut it and serve in large square portions.
Cheesy Chili Mac
If you like the canned chili mac, you can make your own for a lot less money, and it tastes better too! Cook the noodles until they are very tender. Drain most of the water off. By most, I mean just leave a small amount in the bottom of your pan. Add in a can of ready made chili with beans. Stir the mixture up and heat thoroughly. Add in the cheese packet and a little more water, if necessary.
Scoop the Chili Mac into serving bowls and sprinkle with your favorite grated cheese. Serve it with a tall glass of milk and a bowl of crackers and watch the bowl of spicy macaroni and cheese disappear!