Many fundamentalists will say there is nothing more to mac ‘n cheese but macaroni and cheese. I, however, am a proponent of the cheese sauce. It transforms shredded cheese into to a thick, creamy mixture that leaves no tuck, turn or tunnel of a macaroni noodle bare. What you have here is a killer recipe that can be easily made gluten-free diet by substituting corn starch. All you need to do is spend 40 less minutes on frustrating over 2048. Your taste buds and sanity will thank you.

Advanced Course

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes

Servings: 4

Ingredients (all from Hillside):


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

1/2 package of Ballpark Frank dogs
1 package of Mann’s Steam-In-Bag broccoli
1 lb of Pasta Joy brown rice shells

For the roux:
3/8 cup flour (you can substitute corn starch)
1/4 cup butter

For the mac ‘n cheese sauce:
1 block Cracker Barrel cheddar cheese
1 block pepper jack cheese
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
1/2 cup Ocean Spray apple juice
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon French’s yellow mustard
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper


1. Make a roux.

2. Meanwhile, heat 1 cup milk and 1/2 cup heavy cream over medium-low heat in a pot, and boil your pasta water and hot dog water. Make sure to thoroughly salt the pasta water with about 1 teaspoon additional salt.

3. Cut pepper jack and cheddar cheese into 1/2 inch x 1/2 inch cubes.

Optional step 3.5: Admire your cheese mountain.


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

4. Once the roux is all set, add it in small dollops to the milk and cream. Whisk away as you heat the mixture to boiling.  Allow the milk, cream, and roux to boil for 5 minutes or until all roux clumps are gone. It should have the consistency of pudding.


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

5. Reduce to low heat. Add cheese cubes to the thickened milk and allow them to melt in. Stir frequently so the milk does not burn.


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

6. While the cheese is melting, add 1lb brown rice pasta to the boiling water. You will have wonderfully al dente pasta in about 14 minutes.


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

7. Add 4 hot dogs to a pot of boiling water and cook for 5 minutes, then transfer the hot dogs to your cutting board and allow them to cool.

8.Once the cheese has completely melted, add 1/2 cup apple juice, 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, and 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon French’s yellow mustard to the sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste. Allow to simmer and stir occasionally until everything else is ready.


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie W


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

9. Put the bag of broccoli into the microwave face down for 3 and 1/2 minutes.

10. Once the pasta has fully cooked, strain it with a colander. Put it back to the pot, then add the broccoli.


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

11. Once the hot dogs have sufficiently cooled, cut them into small rings and add them to the pasta and broccoli.


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

12. Pour the cheese sauce over the top and you’ve got yourself some dog ‘n broc mac ‘n cheese.


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu


Photo Courtesy of Bonnie Wu

More where that came from:

5 Tips and Tricks for Perfect Pasta

In Defense of Pasta

7 Unusual Uses for Your Microwave