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The Best Keto Mac And Cheese

4.5 stars, average of 10 ratings

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Here it is! Mac and Cheese, one of the most beloved American classics, made low-carb. From all of the keto Mac and Cheese recipes I've ever made, this one is the best, and it's the perfect side dish for your Holiday table!

Recipe Tips for Keto Mac and Cheese

Making keto-friendly Mac and Cheese is easier than you think, and I listed a few options for each ingredient with alternatives and add-ins.

Best Alternative to Pasta in Mac and Cheese?

To keep the carbs low, we are replacing regular pasta with zero-carb shirataki penne, plus cauliflower for bulk and better texture and nutrition profile. Cauliflower works really well in this side dish casserole, plus it provides extra nutrients.

Make sure to prepare the noodles by the steps in this guide.:

  1. Drain and rinse the pasta
  2. Boil the pasta in water with vinegar
  3. Cook the pasta in a dry pan

These steps will only take a few minutes and are essential for improving the texture and removing any odor — the main reasons some people don't like eating konjac (shirataki) pasta.

And if you want to avoid shirataki pasta altogether, make this Keto Cauliflower Cheese instead.

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Best Cheese for Keto Mac and Cheese?

You either use one type of cheese or a combination of two like I did. Gruyere is the best option for flavor, and mozzarella is a must for that perfect cheese pull. Don't use too much mozzarella though as it can make the cheese sauce too dry and stringy (See photo below which was made with 2 cups of mozzarella instead of 1 cup mozzarella + 1 cup gruyere).

You really can't go wrong with almost any cheese. Try cheddar, gouda or Emmental. Avoid pre-grated cheese as it's covered in starches and will make your sauce grainy. Always use freshly grated cheese when used in casseroles and bakes.

The cheese sauce in this recipe is based on my Keto Cheese Sauce which I modified for baking. To add flavor I used mustard powder and garlic but you can even add some herbs or use blue cheese to make a slightly different zero-carb pasta casserole.

Best Add-Ins to Keto Mac and Cheese?

You can keep this recipe simple and vegetarian or add any of your favorite proteins such as sliced chicken breasts, ground meat (pork, beef or turkey), chorizo or some crispy bacon. If you add any of these options, cook them on a lightly greased pan before combining with the remaining ingredients.

Want more flavor? Add any herbs or spices such as chives, onion powder, parsley, thyme, or even a pinch of turmeric or paprika for color.

Prefer more veggies? Add some steamed green peas, green beans, carrot or broccoli. I'm not sure I'd still call this a Mac and Cheese but it doesn't mean you can't experiment with flavors and textures!

What to Serve with Keto Mac and Cheese?

This Mac and Cheese is great on it's own or as a side. If you serve it as a side, you'll get 6 to 8 servings. If you serve it as a main course, it will be enough for 4 satisfying dinners.

As a side dish you can serve it with many dishes including Steak, herby Spatchcock Chicken, easy Southern Fried Chicken, 5-ingredient Wrapped Chicken Parcels, juicy Pork Belly or Crispy Lemon & Thyme Chicken.

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Hands-on Overall

Serving size about 170 g/ 6 oz side dish

Allergy information for The Best Keto Mac And Cheese

✔  Gluten free
✔  Egg free
✔  Nut free
✔  Nightshade free
✔  Pork free
✔  Avocado free
✔  Coconut free
✔  Fish free
✔  Shellfish free
✔  Beef free
Pescatarian
Vegetarian

Nutritional values (per serving, about 170 g/ 6 oz side dish)

Net carbs5.1 grams
Protein13.9 grams
Fat32 grams
Calories351 kcal
Calories from carbs 6%, protein 15%, fat 79%
Total carbs7.8 gramsFiber2.8 gramsSugars2.8 gramsSaturated fat19 gramsSodium690 mg(30% RDA)Magnesium34 mg(9% RDA)Potassium270 mg(14% EMR)

Ingredients (makes 8 servings)

English muffin:
Cauliflower & pasta:
  • 1 small cauliflower, cut into florets (400 g/ 14.2 oz)
  • 2 packs shirataki penne or fettuccine (400 g/ 14.2 oz)
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter (28 g/ 1 oz)
Cheese sauce:
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream (120 ml/ 4 fl oz)
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter (28 g/ 1 oz)
  • 1 cup cream cheese or soft goat cheese (240 g/ 8.5 oz)
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 cup grated Gruyere cheese or hard cheese of choice (115 g/ 4 oz)
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese (115 g/ 4 oz)
  • 1 tsp sea salt (or less, depending on the cheese you use)
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (45 g/ 1.6 oz)

Instructions

  1. To make the English muffin, melt the butter in a ramekin in the microwave just until melted. In a small bowl, mix almond flour, flax meal, coconut flour, psyllium powder, salt and baking powder. Add the water and stir until combined. Microwave for 1 minute and 30 seconds to 2 minutes. Use a spatula to loosen the edges and invert. Let it cool down and then cut into small pieces or break into crumbles.
    Tips for cooking in the oven: If you don't have a microwave, I suggest you make 4-8 servings at once. Preheat the oven to 175 °C/ 350 °F (fan assisted), or 195 °C/ 380 °F (conventional) and cook for 15-20 minutes or until cooked in the centre. The Best Keto Mac And Cheese
  2. Cut the cauliflower in small florets. Place in a steamer pot and cook until tender, for 8 to 12 minutes. Remove the lid and let the steam escape. Place the cauliflower in a casserole dish large enough to hold all of the ingredients. The Best Keto Mac And Cheese
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the shirataki noodles by following the instructions here. (First you'll need to drain and rinse the shirataki, then boil in water with vinegar for a few minutes, and finally cook in a dry pan. It will only take a few minutes.)
  4. Once cooked, add 2 tablespoons of butter and toss to combine. The Best Keto Mac And Cheese
  5. Make the cheese sauce. Place the cream and butter into a small sauce pan and gently heat up. Add cream cheese, mustard powder, minced garlic and salt (you may need less salt depending on the cheese you use). Stir to combine and then add freshly grated Gruyere cheese (or any hard cheese of choice) and mozzarella. Stir until melted and bring to a simmer. Once you see bubbles, take off the heat. Mix until smooth and creamy. The Best Keto Mac And Cheese
  6. Preheat the oven to 180 °C/ 355 °F (fan assisted), or 200 °C/ 400 °F (conventional). To assemble the casserole, place the prepared shirataki into the casserole dish and toss to combine with the cooked cauliflower florets. Pour the cheese sauce all over and combine with a spatula. The Best Keto Mac And Cheese
  7. Sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese and the diced or crumbled English muffin. The Best Keto Mac And Cheese
  8. Place in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes, rotating the tray halfway to ensure even browning. The Best Keto Mac And Cheese
  9. Remove from the oven and set aside for 5 minutes to cool before serving. Eat warm or let it cool down and store in the fridge for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Reheat before serving. The Best Keto Mac And Cheese

Ingredient nutritional breakdown (per serving, about 170 g/ 6 oz side dish)

Net carbsProteinFatCalories
Butter, unsalted, grass-fed
0 g0 g1.4 g13 kcal
Flax meal (flaxmeal), ground flaxseed
0 g0.3 g0.7 g9 kcal
Water, still
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Almond flour (blanched ground almonds, almond meal)
0.1 g0.3 g0.8 g9 kcal
Coconut flour, organic
0.1 g0.1 g0.1 g2 kcal
Psyllium husk powder
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Salt, sea salt
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Baking powder, gluten-free
0.1 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Cauliflower, fresh
1.5 g1 g0.1 g13 kcal
Shirataki noodles, konjac noodles
0.8 g0 g0.1 g2 kcal
Butter, unsalted, grass-fed
0 g0 g2.9 g25 kcal
Cream, heavy whipping, pouring, full-fat (30-40% fat)
0.4 g0.3 g5.7 g55 kcal
Butter, unsalted, grass-fed
0 g0 g2.9 g25 kcal
Cream cheese, soft (full-fat)
1 g2.1 g8.4 g74 kcal
Mustard seed, ground (mustard powder), spices
0 g0.1 g0.1 g1 kcal
Garlic, fresh
0.1 g0 g0 g1 kcal
Cheese, Swiss , Gruyère
0.1 g4.2 g4.5 g58 kcal
Mozzarella cheese (low moisture, for pizza)
0.8 g3.4 g2.8 g42 kcal
Salt, sea salt
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Parmesan cheese
0.2 g2 g1.5 g22 kcal
Total per serving, about 170 g/ 6 oz side dish
5.1 g13.9 g32 g351 kcal

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Martina Slajerova
Creator of KetoDietApp.com

Martina Slajerova

I changed the way I ate in 2011, when I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, an autoimmune disease that affects the thyroid. I had no energy, and I found it more and more difficult to maintain a healthy weight.

That’s when I decided to quit sugar, grains, and processed foods, and to start following a whole-foods-based ketogenic approach to food.

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Comments (2)

Hello Martina. Thank you for giving us what seems like such an indulgent meal. We usually make a quick keto brocoli bake w/brocoli, curry spice and seasonings, cream and cheese. I didn't think I'd get keto school mac and cauli cheese, ever!
Also at the cheese sauce phase, how much mustard powder, minced garlic and seasonings do you use?
Thank you again.x

Broccoli or cauliflower are are really good for cheesy bakes! I added amounts in the ingredients (my mistake as I omitted them from the list). I hope you like it 😊