Brie mac and cheese takes traditional macaroni and cheese to the next level and beyond. It's creamy, comforting, and so delicious. Tender pasta is tossed in a rich and creamy cheese sauce made with brie and parmesan (instead of cheddar), and baked until bubbly and perfect with a crunchy panko breadcrumb topping. It's quick and easy to make in about 30 minutes, and a staple kid-friendly recipe that every cook should know how to make — and I don’t mean from the box.
Why You'll Love Brie Mac and Cheese
- It’s quick and easy to make. This brie mac and cheese is ready in about 30 minutes from start to finish. While the pasta is cooking, you can make the cheese sauce, then toss in the pasta and top it with a breadcrumb topping. Pop it into the oven until brie mac and cheese until it reaches bubbly perfection.
- Made with brie instead of cheddar. Mac and cheese is delicious and comforting, but sometimes we want to switch things up a bit. Not only is using brie a nice change of pace, but it also has its own pros over cheddar mac. Since brie is a softer cheese, you can expect your cheese sauce to be creamier, softer, and velvetier. Plus, it has a unique flavor that you can’t beat.
- Baked to perfection. You can totally enjoy this brie mac and cheese as is, without popping it into the oven, but baking it takes it to another level. It helps the sauce thicken up making it even creamier, but it has a crispy, crunchy breadcrumb layer on top that is a must try! Although baking this macaroni and cheese does take an extra step, it is so worth it!
- A family favorite. Who doesn't love mac and cheese? If you are looking for a kid-friendly dinner, this would be it. Why make boxed mac and cheese when it's so easy (and more delicious) making it homemade with real cheese? This is a dinner you can feel good about feeding your family since you know exactly what is going in it.
Ingredients and Substitutions
To make this delicious Brie Mac and Cheese, you will need the following ingredients (full quantities in recipe card below):
- pasta - I used shell pasta but any small shaped pasta will work such as macaroni, elbow, bowtie, and penne.
- butter + flour - to make a roux to thicken up the cheese sauce.
- brie cheese
- Parmesan cheese - adds a slight nutty flavor, you can leave this out if you prefer.
- Dijon mustard
- breadcrumb topping - made with panko breadcrumbs, garlic powder, paprika, and olive oil.
You will also need a large pot, cast-iron skillet (or use a skillet and a 2.5 quart casserole pan).
How to Make the Best Brie Mac and Cheese
- Boil the pasta. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium high heat. Add shell pasta and cook just until it hits al dente, about 6-8 minutes. Drain well, rinse with cold water, and set aside.
- Make the cheese sauce. In a large cast-iron skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour to make a roux, whisking constantly for about 1-2 minutes until roux is light and golden. Note that it will be clumpy. Gradually add in half the milk, whisking constantly until incorporated. The sauce will thicken and clump in the beginning but once you add in more milk, it will smoothen out again. Add in remaining milk and whisk until smooth. Add in brie and Parmesan cheese and reduce the heat to low. Add in salt, paprika, and Dijon mustard, and stir until the cheese has melted.
- Add in pasta. Add in cooked pasta and toss together until fully coated with the cheese sauce. Set aside.
- Make panko topping. In a small mixing bowl, combine panko breadcrumbs, garlic powder, and paprika. Stir until combined. Add olive oil and stir until evenly combined and the mixture has the same consistency throughout. Sprinkle the breadcrumb topping on top of the mac and cheese.
- Bake. Bake in a 350F preheated oven for 15 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and the breadcrumbs are golden brown. Let cool down for 5 minutes before serving.
Storing and Reheating Instructions
- How to store: Store baked brie mac and cheese in an airtight container in the fridge. It will last for about 3-5 days.
- How to reheat: If you’re in a rush, you can microwave this baked mac and cheese in 20-second intervals, frequently stirring until it is warmed through. But, if you want to preserve the crisp topping of your baked mac and cheese, you should bake it again. Place the baked mac and cheese in an oven-safe dish and cover it with aluminum foil. Then, heat it in a 350F preheated oven for 15-25 minutes until it is hot all the way through.
More Macaroni Recipes
- Baked Mac and Cheese
- Stovetop White Cheddar Mac and Cheese
- Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
- Fried Mac and Cheese Balls
- Macaroni Salad
Did you make this recipe? I would greatly appreciate a comment and rating below, letting me know what you thought of the recipe. You can also snap a picture and tag me on Instagram @aheadofthyme or share it on the Pinterest pin so that I can follow along.