- 8 cups water
- 8 oz. elbow macaroni
- 1 Tbsp. + ½ tsp. salt
- 7 Tbsp. butter, divided
- 4 Tbsp. all purpose flour
- 1 and ½ cups half and half
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
- 8 oz. shredded Cheddar cheese
- 4 oz. shredded Colby Jack cheese
- ¾ cup panko breadcrumbs
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- In a large pot, bring water and 1 tablespoon of the salt to boil. Add elbow macaroni and cook for 9 minutes, until al dente. Drain and set aside.
- While the pasta is cooking, in a large skillet, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter over medium-low heat.
- Whisk in flour until incorporated and no clumps remain. Add in half and half slowly, while continually whisking. Mixture will thicken so keep whisking until smooth.
- Add in onion powder, garlic powder, 1/2 tsp. of salt and the pepper and stir until incorporated. Add cheeses a handful at a time and whisk until melted. Pour in pasta and stir to coat.
- Add mixture to a 4-quart casserole dish.
- In a small bowl, mix breadcrumbs and 3 Tbsp. of melted butter until well coated.
- Top pasta with breadcrumbs.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, uncovered until bubbly. If breadcrumbs brown too quickly, top with aluminum foil.
- Serve warm.