Speedy Macaroni and Cheese

Some people lose their appetite when times are gloomy, not me. I am still as ravenous as ever but I do tend to fixate upon a certain type of food. That food is the type of food that harks back to another era. Food that is such a retro classic that I am posting this as part of Waiter There’s Something in My … Retro Classic. For me the ultimate classic is macaroni and cheese. It is endearing in its simplicity and the innocence of a meal constructed almost entirely of cheese and pasta. In a time before low carb diets and balanced eating became buzz words macaroni and cheese reigned supreme.

This version is based on the Nigella Express recipe for macaroni and cheese and so it uses evaporated milk rather than a white sauce. This is supposed to save time, however I am not convinced it is that time saving so if you have an extra five minutes I would adopt the traditional approach of flour, milk and butter for a white sauce rather than evaporated milk. I have given Nigella’s recipe a slightly more contemporary twist by scattering some crispy bacon bits on top and adding a dash of Dijon mustard to the creamy sauce.

25og macaroni
250g mature Cheddar grated
250ml evaporated milk
2 eggs
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
3 rashers of bacon sliced into small pieces
Salt and pepper to season

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Bring a pot of water to the boil and cook the macaroni according to the packet instructions, drain and then return to the pot.

2. Meanwhile put the cheese, evaporated milk, eggs and mustard into a bowl and mix to combine.

3. Slice the bacon into small pieces and fry until lightly browned in a fry pan. Leave to drain for a few minutes on a piece of kitchen towel.

4. Pour the cheese mixture over the macaroni, stir in the bacon and season with salt and pepper.
5. Transfer to an ovenproof dish and bake for about 10-15 minutes or until browned on top.

Serves 4. Based on a recipe from Nigella Express.

If you liked reading this and are in the mood for comfort food try this recipe for Smoked Haddock and Salmon Fish Cakes or if you are feeling nostalgic in London head to A Gold – the way a corner store used to be.


  1. Pasta, Cheese and Bacon – what’s not to like here?
    I love quick filling recipes like this – thanks for posting it Gourmet Chick.

  2. This looks beautiful 🙂 I’ve wanted to try this recipe for a while – I have the book. I like how you put it – the “simplicity and the innocence” of macaroni cheese 🙂

  3. yum. this does seem like it would be easy to make. and come to think of it, I’ve got everything in the fridge to make it right now!

  4. I must say, I think the evaporated milk substitution idea could be the difference for me between making macaroni cheese and making something else! It’s the cleanup as well as the time. If the “white sauce” stage is cut out, you can make this in a single pan (use one that can go on the stove as well as in the oven — cook the pasta in it, leave the pasta in the colander while you cook the bacon in the pan, then put the pasta back in along with everything else, mix well, stick it in the oven).

    I’ve actually just added some evaporated milk to tomorrow’s Ocado order so I can try this — thank you for posting about it!

  5. Ooohh great recipe to feed a hungry student busy cramming for exams!

  6. Dan – Three of my favourite things also

    Laura – It is quite a handy book some good ideas in there

    Justin – Great there is nothing stopping you then.

    Kake – Good point – although it may not save much in time it does save in washing up. I am quite a messy cook so anything I can do to use less pots is always welcome.

    Genuiness – Perfect comfort/study food. Good luck with the cramming.

  7. Oh, I hear you… This is a definite retro classic and comfort food extraordinaire. I’d definitely go the bacon & mustard route too! Thanks very much for taking part in WTSIM 🙂

  8. […] low-carb diets and cholesterol-consciousness.  Yes, folks, I speak of the Golden Age of macaroni cheese.  Comfort in a bowl – made even yummier by GC's addition of bacon bits and […]

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