That's me, I guess. We had mac-n-cheese for lunch today and our guests were stunned that I made my own instead of using a boxed mix. That has happened before. I just don't happen to keep box mixes around. I did once decide that I didn't like the fact that most boxed mixes have artificial food dye in them, but the joke was on me when I checked my "natural" cheddar cheese label. But anyway, it's easier for me to store pasta, cheese and milk separately.
My recipe is very simple; it comes from The Rainbow Bakery Cookbook: A Color-Full Adventure Children's Cookbook which my kids received as a gift a few years ago (Thanks Ls!). It's published by Gold Medal Flour.
Pot of Gold Cheese Sauce
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons flour (you know in the book they specify the brand)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Melt the butter in a saucepan, add flour and salt and whisk till smooth and bubbly. Add the milk, stirring constantly (I never do), boil for 1 minute. Reduce the heat to very low and add the cheese; stir till it's melted.
If you have some powdered mustard, a dash of that brings out the cheese flavor. A dash of cayenne gives a little kick.
Then add the cooked pasta. This recipe is just for cheese sauce so it doesn't specify an amount, and I'm not sure - I think for that amount of sauce, maybe 1/2 a pound. But sometimes my kids say it's too cheesy. Sometimes we like having some left over to dunk bread in. Or pour it over tortilla chips. It's a good thing to experiment with. And it just doesn't take much longer than doing the boxed mix.
You can also put it in a baking dish, put some breadcrumbs on top, and bake it for a while. But I never bother with that, the kids are always in too big a hurry to eat it.