This Red Robin Mac and Cheese recipe is gooey, cheesy, and everything you want in a comfort food!
Red Robin is a famous restaurant chain, known for classic American food like burgers and fried chicken. Their famous mac and cheese stable dish is a family favorite, for little kids and adults alike.
This copycat recipe uses the same excellent quality ingredients for a deliciously rich mac and cheese. Full fat milk, sharp cheddar, and processed cheese all give this simple yet fulfilling dish its signature creaminess.
I use elbow macaroni like Red Robin, but you can use whatever pasta you have on hand!
This is a great dish to make ahead and store in the freezer for a day you don’t feel like cooking. It reheats amazingly, and can be served on its own or with meat and vegetables mixed in.
With this simple recipe, you’ll be able to recreate Red Robin’s famous mac and cheese right at home.
Picking the Best Red Robin Mac and Cheese Ingredients
Cheddar is a classic for mac and cheese, and for a good reason! It has a low melting point, so it becomes smooth and gooey when heated up.
I prefer sharp cheddar cheese because it has a strong flavor that makes this dish extra cheesy. Some mac and cheese recipes opt for cream cheese or other melting varieties like gruyere.
Processed cheese is mild, melts easily, and is super creamy. When you add it to this mac and cheese, it helps make the sauce more velvety.
The mild flavor of this cheese also helps make this dish more kid-friendly for picky eaters!
Milk is used to create the creamy bechamel sauce. For the best flavor and texture, it’s best to use whole, full-fat milk.
Avoid using heavy cream or evaporated milk, as the high fat content may cause the sauce to split.
Butter usually comes either salted or unsalted. This recipe already has a lot of salt due to the high amounts of cheese, so opt for unsalted. This will allow you to have better control over the saltiness and the overall flavor of the dish.
Red Robin Mac and Cheese
- Prep Time5 min
- Cook Time20 min
- Total Time25 min
- Boil Water
Place a pot with lightly salted water over high heat. Let the water come to a boil.
- Cook Macaroni
Add elbow macaroni to the boiling water. Cook for 8-10 minutes, or until al dente. Drain the macaroni and set it aside.
- Make Roux
Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat. Add flour and whisk to mix. Add milk and continue to whisk for 4 minutes.
- Add Cheese
Mix grated sharp cheddar and processed cheese into the roux. Cook over low for approximately 5 minutes until the cheese becomes smooth.
Taste the sauce and add salt if needed.
- Mix in Macaroni
Pour the drained pasta into the cheese sauce and mix well. Make sure all the pasta is coated.
Serve this red robin mac and cheese while it’s hot.
What to Eat with Red Robin Mac and Cheese
- To be a balanced meal, this simple mac and cheese needs a side! Look for sides that will contrast with the richness of the cheese. Healthy options include steamed broccoli or a cold salad like kfc coleslaw recipe.
- To balance out the carbs, try adding protein to this meal. Mac and cheese recipes go great with barbecue dishes like ribs. Or, try mixing meats like grilled chicken or ground beef right in with the pasta!
Mac and cheese is a well-loved comfort food, but comfort food doesn’t always mean healthy. Mac and cheese are mostly carbs and are considered a high-calorie dish. It also contains dairy, which is high in fat, and cheese, which is high in sodium.
If you make this mac and cheese for dinner, it’s best to cut back on the sodium in other meals. This will ensure your body isn’t getting too much sodium in one day.
For reference, the daily recommended amount of sodium for an adult is 2400mg or 1 tsp. – Kristen Mae Magbanua, RDN
More Easy Mac and Cheese Recipes You’ll Love
- 18.1g Fat
- 44.3g Carbs