Deep Fried Mac and Cheese
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box prepared elbow macaroni and cheese
cup Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
cups Progresso™ panko bread crumbs or Progresso™ plain bread crumbs
Vegetable oil, for frying
Prepare a box of elbow macaroni and cheese as directed. Pour macaroni into an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan, cover and refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours or overnight.
Right before you plan to take the macaroni out of the fridge, place flour, beaten eggs and breadcrumbs in three separate, shallow bowls. Pour vegetable oil into a deep, large pot to about a 3/4-inch depth. Heat over medium-high heat, careful not to let it get smoky.
Place a paper towel-lined tray near pot of oil. Remove macaroni from refrigerator and from loaf pan. Chop into 1 x 1 1/2-inch rectangles. Coat each rectangle with flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs.
Using a slotted spoon, place as many bites in the hot oil as you can without crowding them. Deeply brown them on one side, then the other, then remove with a slotted spoon and place on paper towels. Serve warm.
More About This Recipe
- This is the kind of recipe that hurts, but hurts so good.It’s the kind of thing you make when you want to wow your guests with your creativity. The other motive: make sure they eat so many that you don’t have to pick up the slack. But if you have to, that’s fine. Sometimes there is never too much of a good thing!This recipe for Deep Fried Mac n’ Cheese reminds me a lot of arancini – delicious Italian breaded rice balls filled with cheese or meat sauce and other yummy ingredients. But this lowbrow recipe is much easier to make in your kitchen, and uses ingredients you probably have on hand already.I made my version with white cheddar elbow macaroni and crispy Panko breadcrumbs, but feel free to mix it up with sharp cheddar macaroni, regular breadcrumbs, herbs, spices – whatever you like! You can use a store-bought variety of mac and cheese or make it from scratch.Always remember to be safe when frying things in hot oil – wear long sleeves and never, ever put your face near the pot. Also, use a slotted spoon to place the bites into the oil and to remove them. Trust me – freshly oiled food is HOT!After you’ve placed your bites in the oil and let them deeply brown on both sides, remove them and place them on the paper towels. Voila! Gooey, cheesy, deep-fried deliciousness at your fingertips.
Fried Macaroni and Cheese
The next time you’re walking down that grocery store aisle with all the boxed goods, and you see that blue box with the mac and cheese, just walk right on by and head over to the pasta aisle instead. You’re never going to want that box of mac and cheese again once you try the cowboy version of fried mac and cheese, I promise you that.
We’re going to go all out today with the cheese. There’s going to be Velveeta and cream cheese because we want the inside to be super creamy throughout. Nothing makes mac and cheese creamier than Velveeta.
Now, when you get to the pasta aisle at the grocery store, get the large elbow macaroni – not the small ones. You’re gonna need at least eight ounces, so get yourself a big bag.
After you’ve got the pasta and cheeses in your cart don’t forget to head over to the meat department and get you some thick sliced bacon.
Once you get everything at home, get out your
TIP: Add some oil to the pasta water to prevent the pasta from sticking.
Cook the pasta until it’s just a little firmer than al dente and drain. It’s going to cook a little longer later on so we don’t want it to get too soft.
Put the stove on low and then add the pasta back into the pot. Add all the cheese and cream and stir until the cheese is melted. Then, mix in the drained chiles and bacon and onion. Mix it good until it’s creamy. Stir in some of my original seasoning to boost the flavor.
At this point, we want to get the mac and cheese nice and cold in the ice box for 3 hours before we put it in the fryer.
TIP: Everything behaves better in the fryer if it’s good and cold.
Once the mac and cheese is set up, go ahead and set up the assembly line. You’ll have the mac and cheese, an egg wash and some Panko bread crumbs. I like to use an ice cream scoop to get the mac and cheese out, roll it in a ball, soak in the egg wash and really squish those bread crumbs in there nice and firm so they stick.
TIP: Don’t make the balls larger than golfball sized because you want them to warm thru when frying.
Repeat until the grease is hot and then fry these babies up until they’re a beautiful golden brown.
TIP: After rolling the balls in the Panko use your hands to pack the breadcrumbs onto the mac balls. This will help it stick better.
Take a bite and look at that creamy, cheesy goodness that oozes out of the crunchy crust. This stuff will flounder you up so good you’ll feel like a dead carp laying out in the sunshine after you went and ate too many, but you just can’t help yourself. It’s just so simple and so good.
Remember to subscribe to the YouTube channel, share the videos with your neighbors, and share the food. Never look down on a person unless you’re offering them a hand up – or a fried mac and cheese ball. I’ll see y’all down the trail.
Deep Fried Mac & Cheese Balls
- 1 pound elbow macaroni
- 1/2 stick butter
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 3 cups whole milk
- 1 large egg
- 3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 ½ cups shredded muenster cheese
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the macaroni and cook until al dente, about a minute less than the recommended cooking time on the package.
- Meanwhile, in a large pot, melt the butter then add in flour. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes until it turns to a light tan color. Add in the milk and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, remove about ½ cup of the milk and pour it into a small bowl with the egg and mix quickly to temper the eggs. Once fully combined, add the mixture to the pot stir immediately until fully combined.
- Add in the cheddar cheese, salt, pepper, and mix until combined. Add in the drained macaroni into the cheese mixture and mix until combined. Pour into a large 9吉 inch baking pan, cover, place in the fridge for at least 3 hours to overnight.
- Shape the cold mac and cheese into tightly packed meatball-sized balls and place them onto a parchment paper-lined tray. Place in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- In a small bowl combine the breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese. In another small bowl beat an egg until fully combined. Coat each of the balls of macaroni in the egg followed by the breadcrumbs. Place back on the tray and repeat with the rest of the balls. Meanwhile preheat oil in the Chefman Deep Fryer to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Fry each ball for 5 minutes until golden brown.
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Eitan Bernath is a 19 year-old chef, food & lifestyle content creator, entertainer, TV personality, and entrepreneur, best known for his viral videos on social media that showcase his cooking expertise and captivating personality.
Ol’ School Mac & Cheese
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It took forever, I know, but here it is: the recipe for Ol’ School Mac & Cheese! This is the mac and cheese y’all have been asking for since my husband’s birthday back in March.
You can find a video tutorial on how to prepare this dish on my YouTube channel and more photographs on Instagram.
Fun fact: as a kid I preferred Kraft Deluxe with the pouch of cheese goo over anyone’s baked mac. Today, I haven’t changed – I will eat ‘real’ macaroni and cheese as most Black folks consider it, but I don’t seek it out.
I do make it fairly often tho no one in my family shares my affinity for the blue box.
Damn, I just remembered this very second that I owe you guys a stovetop jalapeño mac and cheese recipe too. Welp. I’ll get on that eventually.
This Ol’ School Mac & Cheese recipe is your Classic Southern Black Gramma’s Thanksgiving mac: evaporated milk, eggs, and yes, Velveeta. No béchamel, no breadcrumbs, no expensive cheeses.
If you’re looking for more sophisticated options, there are tons on Pinterest. One of my family’s favorites is Resha’s from Carnal Dish.
Check out my other recipes for mac and cheese: my Carolina Reaper Mac and Cheese recipe if you’re looking for a challenge and the Stovetop Mac & Cheez recipe in my first cookbook As Seen On IG.
Deep Fried Mac And Kimcheese
While the pasta boils, melt your butter in a pot over low-medium heat and stir in the flour. Heat for 1 minute to ensure the flour is cooked. Slowly incorporate the milk, a bit at a time, and whisk until the mixture is thick and smooth. Add the grated cheeses, mix well, then season with cayenne, salt and pepper. Remove from the heat.
Roughly chop the kimchi into small pieces and mix through the sauce.
Add the cooked and drained macaroni into a large mixing bowl and pour in the sauce. Stir to combine.
Line a 23cm x 23cm baking tray with baking paper and fill with your mac and kimcheese mixture. Press the mix down firmly, cover with cling film and refrigerate for an hour or until the mix sets firm.
Once firm, cut into squares, dust with flour, dunk in the whisked egg and finally coat in panko crumbs.
Heat enough vegetable oil for deep frying to 180°C - When a few test crumbs sizzle in the oil, you’re good to begin frying. Carefully lower in each piece and fry for roughly 2 minutes until golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Sprinkle over some salt flakes. Serve hot.
Deep Fried Mac and Cheese Balls
Mac and cheese is definitely one of the best comfort foods (I’m willing to argue about this)… but why stop there when you can take it a step further with these Deep Fried Mac and Cheese Balls?
This recipe has multiple stages so you’ll want to plan ahead. But it’s so good, you won’t regret the time spent on it. I PROMISE.
I took a traditional stove top mac and cheese, and bumped it up to a 4-cheese version… that’s right, FOUR cheeses! Speaking of cheese (one of my favorite things to talk about), just about any cheese will work for this recipe if you have your own preference. Just keep the measurements the same!
If you really wanted to take these fried mac and cheese balls over the top, you could add bacon. God, I wish I added bacon… but, these cheesy bites are delicious either way!
For this recipe I use a combination of traditional Italian seasoned and panko breadcrumbs that have been spiced up a bit with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper.
When frying the balls, don’t overcrowd the pot or you’ll lower the temperature too much and the balls won’t get as crispy. Also, don’t use too big of a pot or you’ll need more oil and it will take longer to heat!
Cook pasta according to package instructions until al dente don't overcook. Drain in a colander and rinse under running water until cooled slightly. Set aside.
Melt butter in 6-quart pot over medium-high heat. Add flour and mustard and whisk constantly for 5 minutes or until lightly browned.
Stir in milk, cream, onion, andouille, bay leaf, and paprika, and cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 5 minutes.
Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes longer. Gradually stir about 1 cup milk mixture into beaten egg, then add egg mixture back to milk mixture in pot. Add cheese, salt, pepper, and hot sauce, and stir until cheese is melted.
Remove from heat and stir in macaroni. Pour into a greased 2-quart rectangular baking dish.
To make topping, melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat stir in bread crumbs and remove from heat. Sprinkle cheese evenly over macaroni, then sprinkle with bread crumb mixture. Bake in a 350 degrees F oven for 30 minutes. Let cool completely, then cover and refrigerate overnight.
The next day, cut casserole lengthwise down the middle, then across into 1-inch bars.
For breading, set up three bowls: in one, combine flour and cayenne beat eggs in the second bowl, and place bread crumbs in the third. Dredge macaroni bars in flour, then egg, then bread crumbs, and place on a baking sheet. Work quickly don't over handle. Let bars rest in refrigerator 20 minutes to set crumbs.
Heat several inches of oil in a deep-fryer to 350 degrees F. Fry bars, a few at a time, 3 to 4 minutes or until golden brown. Season hot bars with additional salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Recipe Source: This recipe was a finalist in the third national TABASCO Cook and Ladder Competition. Submitted by Firefighter Bill Maddalena, Berlin Fire Department, New Hampshire.
The key to amazing mac and cheese bites is using really good and melty mac and cheese.
If you’ve ever had issues with the cheese not melting properly, then you have to try Cooper® Cheese! It melts really well, so it works perfectly for these mac and cheese bites. They always turn out cheesy in the center and beautifully golden brown on the outside.
I used hand-grated to make my mac and cheese, and let me tell you…it comes out super melty, creamy, and cheesy! Plus, the flavors are out of this world. So delicious!
Cooper® Cheese is made with milk and hand-selected aged cheese, and you can use them for almost anything! Aside from these mac and cheese appetizers, I’ve used it for grilled cheese, burgers, and salad toppings. It’s really versatile!
You can order Cooper® Cheese products online. Mine came in a well-refrigerated box and shipping was super fast. Easy and convenient.
Party On: 9 Crunchy, Stretchy Recipes For Deep-Fried Cheese
By using freshly ground corn tortillas as breadcrumbs, you get an exterior that’s reminiscent of the freshly made tortilla chips at your favorite taqueria, but also something that’s not too far off the original Italian breadcrumb-coated version. I use Oaxacan cheese, which is a fresh Mexican mozzarella-style string cheese that’s perfect for this. It’s one of the stretchiest cheeses you’ll find.
A little crisp, a little tender and even a little squeaky, this pan-fried haloumi is a cheese lover’s dream.
Recipe: Sautéed Golden Haloumi
This cheese is described in my well-worn copy of Murray’s Cheese Book as “a rubbery little block, off white and tightly wrapped in Cryovac, not usually what we’d associate with fine cheese. But in the proper application, haloumi is irreplaceable.” The following recipe is, I’d argue, the “proper application.” The version most readily found at many cheese counters is usually enjoyed pan-fried or grilled. Hot off the grill or pan, the outside is firm and crunchy and the inside irresistibly soft and runny. As it cools, the inside turns “squeaky.” I like it with a simple topping of an intensely fruity olive oil and some lemon juice, zipped up with a teaspoon or two of za’atar, the Middle Eastern spice blend of sumac, thyme, and sesame seeds. A more traditional embellishment is a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of toasted pignoli. In the following versions, I describe how to cook the cheese plain, coated with flour, or coated with panko crumbs. Each is delicious. The haloumi is best when soaked in cold water for at least one hour or overnight before using.
Warm, melty goat cheese is the ultimate salad topping. (Photo: Jo Ann Santangelo.)
Recipe: Fried Goat Cheese Salad
Warm goat cheese is definitely something to love. When pierced with a fork, fried goat cheese nuggets melt over greens and mingle with dressing. It’s astounding. Plus, its pronounced “goaty” flavor is mellowed by a quick fry. It’s a perfect pairing for peppery radish slices and sweet spring snap pea pods.
Recipe: Deep-Fried Garlic Bombs
You know the smell instantly when it hits you: ballpark garlic fries. Hell, you can smell them from the parking lot. And no matter what, they always smell so damn good. But let’s get real — they never quite taste as good as they smell. The solution? Well, we need to kick things up a notch. Warning: The following recipe is for serious garlic lovers. We’re going to roast some whole cloves of garlic, wrap them in a cheesy garlic dough, and then deep-fry them. It’s some serious garlic-on-garlic action that will play out on your taste buds. And if you’re not prepared, there will be casualties. But we think you’re ready.
Forget the fried mac and cheese ball. These pancakes need to be made. (Photo: Sara Remington.)
Recipe: Mac Cakes
Fried mac and cheese was yummy, but it’s hard to get much cheesy flavor into fried mac balls — they need a lot of other stuff to bind them so they don’t fall apart in the deep-fryer. However, mac and cheese pancakes (or Mac-Cakes, as we call them) are actually delicious!
Wait till you break into these fluffy beds of stretchy mozzarella and tangy, spicy cured ’nduja sausage!
Recipe: ‘Nduja In Carrozza
Try this deep-fried, pillowy mozzarella and spicy sausage sandwich and never go back to grilled cheese again.
Is there anything better than a deep-fried, cheese-stuffed pepper?
Recipe: Tempura Cheese–Stuffed Chilies
We’re not getting any less obsessed with great food stuffed into great food, particularly when cheese and deep-frying are involved. That’s only one of many reasons we’re plowing through Hardie Grant Books’s new izakaya cookbook — the Japanese have truly mastered the art of the bar snack. Next up, hot red chilies stuffed with cheddar, battered and fried tempura-style.
What’s better than runny Camembert? Camembert that’s runny because it was deep-fried!
Recipe: Crumbed Camembert, Apple And Mango Salad
What could be better than deep-fried crumbed cheese? Yum yum! Whether you use goat cheese, ricotta mixed with herbs and dried chili and rolled into balls, mixed cheese scraps squashed together or, as here, Camembert, deep-frying it in this way is like having grilled (broiled) cheese on toast!
These nuggets of flavor are sure to have you craving more. (Photo: Aliya LeeKong.)
Recipe: Spicy Cheese-Stuffed Fried Olives
Fried olives may have originated in the Le Marche region of eastern Italy. There, they take pancetta, ground meats, cheese, herbs and spices and stuff large green olives, breading them and then deep-frying them to a golden crisp. Olive all’Ascolana is the name of the dish.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs, beaten
- ½ cup milk
- 1 pound cheese curds
- 1 quart oil for frying
In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir in the eggs and milk. Mix until smooth. Add more milk for a thinner batter. Coat the cheese curds with the batter.
Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Fry the coated cheese curds approximately 1 minute each, until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.