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Goat Cheese and Caramelized Onion Cheddar mac and cheese recipe

It’s the 23rd day of Christmas and our mac and cheese recipe for today is a goat cheese and caramelized onion cheddar mac and cheese. Topped with green hot sauce from Melinda’s, this mac and cheese is as pretty as it is interesting.

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Using Cheese in Mac and Cheese

Pay attention to when the cheesy flavor starts to show up when you take a bite of cheese. Sometimes it’s immediate, but fades away quickly. These are what I call opener cheeses. A Mac and cheese recipe should include an opener cheese that welcomes you to the bowl in cheesy flavor.

Other cheeses take a few seconds to develop but last throughout the end of the bite. These are closer cheeses.

Well-balanced mac and cheese recipes include both an opener and closer cheese to guarantee that the cheesy flavor carries throughout the entire bite.

Goat Cheese

We’ve used soft goat cheese in recipes a few times, but this goat cheese is vastly different. It’s not as creamy, but it packs a tangy punch. Wrapped in a beautiful closer cheese.

Caramelized Onion Cheddar

This Trader Joe’s specialty is packed with flavor and works amazingly well for an opener cheese. The onion flavors balance fantastically with the tangy goat cheese.

Cavatappi Pasta in Goat cheese and caramelized onion cheddar Mac and Cheese

One of the most important decisions to make when developing a mac and cheese recipe is the pasta vehicle. If your noodle type is too large, you run the risk of your dish being cumbersome and difficult to eat, while if your noodle is too small your mac and cheese can become a soupy mess.

Cavatappi is the pasta in this recipe, and it offers plenty of ridges and crannies to hold onto sauce making sure every bite is full of cheesy goodness.


Toppings can add extra pops of texture, flavor, and color that you wouldn’t otherwise see in your cheese sauce. They take a mac and cheese from good to great.

In this recipe, I added a drizzle of Melinda’s green sauce. It adds a bright green color and a spiciness that compliments the mac and cheese beautifully.

Reheating Goat cheese and caramelized onion cheddar Mac and Cheese

Most mac and cheese is difficult to reheat, but roux based pastas reheat beautifully. A minute or two in the microwave and you’ll have delicious, creamy mac and cheese. In fact, if you let the ingredients mingle together in the fridge for a few days, you’ll have even better mac and cheese than the day you made it.

Add a Fork

Goat cheese and caramelized onion cheddar mac and cheese layered with green hot sauce is an easy meal packed with flavor. It can easily be dressed up as an entree or works perfect as a side.

Goat Cheese and Caramelized Onion Cheddar Mac and Cheese

Goat cheese and caramelized onion cheddar mac and cheese layered with green hot sauce is packed with flavor perfect as a meal on its own or as a side.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Entree, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 Servings



  • 1 pound cavatappi Or other medium sized pasta

For the Sauce

  • 3 tbsp Butter
  • 3 tbsp Flour
  • 3 cups Whole milk
  • 4 oz Goat cheese Grated
  • 4 oz Caramelized onion cheddar Grated
  • 1/2 tbsp Better than bullion Chicken flavor
  • 1 tsp Ground mustard


  • green sauce Melinda’s brand


  • Cook the pasta according to package directions in well salted water. If you think it’s salty enough, add more.

Prepare the Sauce

  • Pre heat your milk in the microwave for 45 seconds – just enough to take the chill out of it.
  • Melt butter in a sauce pan over medium heat and let it heat until it becomes foamy.
  • Mix in flour. Cook it for a minute while stirring constantly
  • Slowly add warmed milk to the butter mixture 1/4 cup at a time. Whisk it continually until combined. Stir in mustard powder and Better than Bullion
  • Once all of the milk is added, cook for a few minutes while whisking it. Do not let it boil. You will feel the sauce start to thicken. It’s ready for cheese when you rub a small amount between your fingers and it feels silky.
  • Remove from heat and stir in your cheese until it’s melted and mixed into the sauce.
  • Once the cheese is incorporated, use a cooked noodle to taste your sauce. If it doesn’t taste cheesy enough try adding a little more salt to bring out the flavor.
  • Combine the pasta and sauce.

Plate your Pasta

  • Layer pasta with a drizzle of green sauce. Serve immediately.
Keyword caramelized onion cheddar, cavatappi, goat cheese, melinda’s green sauce