Wednesday, March 13, 2013

12 Weeks of Mac N Cheese - Week 6 (Fried Mac N Cheese)

Cheesecake Factory copycat Fried Mac N Cheese

This week's Mac N Cheese was discovered in our experimenting to make a Cheesecake Factory type Fried Mac N Cheese.  My Mac N Cheese lover happens to order this every time we go to Cheesecake Factory.  So we decided to make one just as good, if not better.  I believe this recipe is just a little creamier than Cheesecake Factory, only because that is how we like our Mac N Cheese.  It is definitely a must try recipe, BUT be aware that this is a plan ahead recipe.  The process takes two days, no matter what.  I tried to condense it into a one day recipe, but it just wouldn't set up in time (even using the freezer).  For those like me that scan recipes quickly and don't read all the details until I am ready to cook it, I have placed in bold letters my warning....only because I hate to get into a recipe I think I can serve that same day to only then read all the details and see that I needed more time than I have.  This recipe is definitely worth the planning ahead and wait time though.  Try it.

WARNING:  Two day recipe!!!  

Prep Time: 20 hours (1 hour first day, 1 hour second day, but must refrigerate at least 12-18 hours)
Cook Time: 45 mins (20 mins to cook pasta on day one.  Another 25 mins to batter and fry on day two)
Servings: Yields 4 servings...makes 8 small patties


  • 12 oz Shell Pasta
  • Pinch Kosher Salt
  • 1tbsp of Olive Oil
  • 1 cup Vermont Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • 1 cup Cabot Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • 8 oz Velvetta
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tsp Franks Hot Sauce
  • 1 cup Panko
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp Accent
  • 1 tsp Lowry's Seasoning Salt
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp fine kosher salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 cups Peanut Oil


1.  Boil 6-8 cups of water in medium to large saucepan.  Place pasta in and boil until almost done.

2.  Grate 2 cups of cheddar cheeses into a bowl.  

3.  Cube Velvetta in small squares.

4.  Once pasta is done, drain and set aside.

5.  In same saucepan, melt butter, add milk and hot sauce into pan.

6.  Add grated cheeses into saucepan and stir.  Add Pasta, stir.

7.  Then add velvetta last and stir just until almost melted....a little thick is good.   

8.  Place in a casserole dish and place in refrigerator OVERNIGHT!!!  (Yes this is not a make in one day I said before this one takes a little planning!  Trying to hurry it up in freezer didn't work for me....but amazingly waiting patiently until next morning was great!)

9.  Once chilled, cut into small squares.  Place on a tray or baking sheet....just to rechill in freezer while preparing next step.  (Here is another tip:  Don't fret if a few of the top pieces of pasta fall off.  I have never been able to make this without a few pieces escaping before the hot oil.  It is OK!)

10.  In three pans fix the following.  
         Pan 1:  Flour, 1 tsp fine kosher salt, and 1 tsp black pepper.
         Pan 2:  Egg & 3 tbsp milk
         Pan 3:  Panko, garlic salt, accent, pepper, Lowry's seasoning salt.

11.  Preheat peanut oil in skillet pan on stove.  Oil needs to rise to at least 250 degrees.  

12.  Pull chilled squares out of freezer and take through each step.  First flour.

(Side note:  I LOVE these batter pans.  They are a William Sonoma set and NO I am not receiving any compensation for telling you about them....I truly just loved them so much, I thought I would share where I got them!  I always like to find not only a good product, but one that is SO useful.  I like how they connect, so as you dip and batter it all stays in the pans.)

13.  Next dip in egg/milk mixture and make sure it is coated completely.

14.  Then into Panko mixture.  Again cover completely.  

15.  Place directly in peanut oil on stove.  This is a process, so I only batter 3-4 at a time and cook in on a paper towel to let dry and then start over with more squares.  (Otherwise, I get carried away and burn in oil, if I am not attentive to what is cooking!  I usually multitask well, but this is not one of those things I recommend multitasking with!)

16.  Drain on paper towel to let excess oil reside before serving.  

17.  SERVE!  So yummy...and very careful when serving to kids right away!

This is very similar to  Cheesecake Factory's Fried Mac N Cheese!!!  Tastes the same.  Hope you try it and let me know what you think!

Mac N Cheese Recipes

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  1. Wow, this looks wonderful! I ordered it once at Cheesecake Factory and they were having all sorts of issues in the kitchen and we never got it. Can't wait to try this. Just pinned!

    1. Vicky...thanks for the pin. Definitely try it, and come back and tell me what you think!!!
      Pam :O)

  2. Hi Lovely. I'm your newest follower from Blog Hop.
    Your blog is awesome.
    Feel free to visit and follow me @


  3. We love Cheesecake Factory, but have never had their fried Mac N Cheese! So excited to try this! Thanks for stopping by our Strut Your Stuff Saturday! -The Six Sisters

  4. It looks delicious but two days?? Yikes! It looks worth it though!

    Thank you for linking to Raising Imperfection.
    Please come back Friday to see if you were featured. :)

    (¸¤ Lanaya | xoxo

  5. Wow, two day recipe. I am more a simple girl in the kitchen, it does look delicious!

    Thank you for linking up to Raising Imperfection!
    Make sure to check back on Friday to see if you were featured.

  6. Yum I love mac & Cheese and I wondered how this was done! Pinning! Thanks for linking up at Made in a Day last week!

  7. Congrats! You are being featured on Made in a Day tomorrow!

  8. Mac N cheese is my weakness. yum yum yum!

  9. I don't normally cook things with more than 5-6 ingredients, but this is a MUST try! This looks amazing! ;)