Mac and Cheese Fries

Mac and Cheese Fries

We all love cheese fries – but what about mac and cheese fries? Sounds like an upgrade to me! The key to this recipe is not just using any mac and cheese, but making a trashy nacho cheese sauce and using that as the sauce for your mac and cheese! I feel like cheese fries have a very specific sauce and its pretty important. If you try and have cheese fries with a fancy sauce it’s not as good in my opinion.

Where I came up with this idea

Cheese fries are a guilty pleasure but when I try to make them at home they never really stack up. The best cheese fries use that processed nacho cheese sauce that comes out of a pump at a baseball game or movie theater. I saw a recipe for this type of cheese sauce on Serious Eats recently and I put it on my to-cook list immediately. I thought it would be cool to use this sauce on a mac and cheese and top it with french fries, so that’s what I did. It wasn’t that good.

My thoughts on putting the fries on top were that they kind of acted like breadcrumbs for the mac and cheese and they would stay crispy. Once I realized the fries should be on the bottom in true cheese fry fashion, it all clicked together! This is a super indulgent dish of cheese on carbs on cheese on carbs, but hey you gotta splurge once in awhile and this is worth it.

Let’s talk fries

If you want to fry your fries you should. Fried fries are great. If you want to make them from scratch even, that would be great too! Today I am using good old frozen crinkle cut fries. I think crinkle cut fries are the best version of frozen french fries. I also think if you toss them with a little salt and oil and cook them higher than the package says they come out great! The ridges also help the mac and cheese cling to the fries.

Fries on the baking sheet

Making the cheese sauce

Mix the cornstarch and evaporated milk in a bowl until all the lumps are gone. Add some butter to a pan then add in the evaporated milk mixture. Bring to a simmer and watch it thicken up! Then add in the pasta, some pasta water, and the cheese and stir it off the heat until it all comes together.

making the sauce

One key is to use a block of cheese you break yourself. The pre shredded cheese has an anti caking agent that prevents it from fully melting smoothly. Another key is to be patient. The cheese might take a little while to melt but don’t turn the heat back on! The sauce can easily break if you heat it too much. In the worst case scenario, you might need to put it on very low heat, but take it on and off the heat every minute or so so it doesn’t overheat and seperate! The sauce should be extra creamy and saucy so that when you pour the mac and cheese on the fries the extra sauce drips down on the fries!

mac and cheese

Just look at this beautiful cheesy mac! I made this extra saucy so that the excess sauce drips down over the fries and everything gets nice and cheesy.

Assemble the mac and cheese fries

Pile up the fries, then dump the mac and cheese on top! Top with some bacon and scallions. So good!

mac and cheese fries!

You need to gather some friends cause this is an epic plate of mac and cheese fries and it will take a few people to eat it! I suggest 8 people as a snack or 4 as a meal.

mac and cheese fries!

It’s all about that bacon and scallion!

tasty mac and cheese fries

Sometimes I take a fry and just eat it with the sauce, other times I grab a fork and dig in for a bite of mac and cheese and fries! The extra saucy mac and cheese helps make sure there is enough cheesy goodness to go around!

look at the way the sauce clings!

Twists on mac and cheese fries

I sometimes add ketchup right to the sauce on these mac and cheese fries. Just make sure to add it late in the game cause if it is too hot the ketchup will help it seperate. I know I seem really worried about the sauce separating but I have had so many break on me over the years I like to take precautions. I would also dump some hot sauce on these! They would be great with all sorts of toppings, especially pulled pork! You could also definitely do this with tater tots instead of fries!

If you want more loaded fry goodness, check out my Corned Beef Gravy Fries!

Mac and Cheese Fries

Crispy fries topped with a creamy saucy mac and cheese and some bacon and scallions
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 479kcal

Ingredients

Mac and Cheese

  • 12 oz evaporated milk
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 8 ounces cheddar cheese grated from a block
  • 8 ounces elbow mac

Fries

  • 1 pound frozen crinkle fries, or fries of your choice
  • salt and peanu oil
  • 4 slices cooked bacon crumbled
  • 4 scallions washed and sliced thin

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 425. Add the fries to a baking sheet and season with some salt and oil. Toss to coat and spread them out. Bake to package instructions until browned around the edges.
  • Bring a pot of heavily salted water to a boil and add in the pasta. Cook according to package to al dente, about 8 minutes. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water just before straining it.
  • Meanwhile, whisk together the evaporated milk and cornstarch in a bowl until combined.
  • Melt the butter in a frying pan and add in the milk mixture. Bring to a simmer and watch as it thickens. Remove from heat
  • Add the pasta, cheese, and pasta cooking water to the pan and stir. Continue to stir until all the cheese melts. Be patient- if you added it all when the pasta is still hot it should eventually melt. If it doesn't melt, put it over low heat for a minute, and continue to stir, taking it on and off the heat every minute or so. Just be careful about overheating because the sauce will break if it gets too hot.
  • Pile up the fries on a serving platter, then pour the mac and cheese over them. Top with the bacon and scallions and serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 479kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 52mg | Sodium: 601mg | Potassium: 495mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 534IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 328mg | Iron: 1mg

3 Comments

  1. Holy cow! I was intrigued and puzzled by the recipe title (I follow you on Bloglovin’) but when I saw the picture, I immediately wanted to make some Cheese Fries Mac and Cheese. And it’s only 8:40 a.m. Yummy creative stuff. Thanks!

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