Copycat J Alexander's NYO (not your ordinary) Mac n' Cheese
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
Copycat J. Alexander's Not Your Ordinary Mac n Cheese
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) Cavatappi or pasta of your choice
  • 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • 2 cubes chicken bouillon
  • 1 Fresh lemon slice
  • 1½ tsps sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter -- divided plus extra for greasing pan
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup half and half
  • ½ small yellow onion minced
  • 1clove of minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Tabasco (more if you prefer a spicy kick)
  • heaping ½ cup fresh grated Gruyere cheese
  • 2¼ cups fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • Freshly ground black pepper (this dish does not need salt as there is plenty in the chicken stock. bouillon and cheese)
  • ½c Panko bread crumbs
  1. Bring 6 cups water (no salt) to rolling boil in medium saucepan.
  2. Add pasta and cook until al dente, 6 to 8 minutes. (I like it to have a little hard bite bc it get's baked it in the oven.)
  3. Drain and put in large baking dish. Toss with Extra Virgin Olive Oil. If using ramekins, divide into 3-4 small ramekins.
  4. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in large saucepan over medium-low heat.
  5. Sautee onion and garlic in butter for a few minutes to draw out the flavor
  6. Whisk in flour and cook, whisking constantly, 2 minutes.
  7. Gradually whisk in chicken stock, 2 cubes chicken bouillon, heavy cream, half n half, and sugar.
  8. Simmer gently, stirring often, 15 minutes.
  9. Remain on low heat and stir in 2 cups parmesan cheese and most of gruyere. Reserve a small amount of the gruyere with the remaining parmesan cheese. Set aside for now.
  10. Season to taste with pepper.
  11. When cheese has completely melted add lemon slice to mixture. Remove after a couple minutes.
  12. Remove pan from the stove. Fold in sour cream and tabasco.
  13. Pour half of mixture slowly, divided into 3-4 ramekins or your baking dish, over macaroni. Stir to incorporate.
  14. Now sprinkle remaining cheese mixture over macaroni.
  15. Top with remaining cheese sauce mixture.
  16. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter in small skillet over medium heat.
  17. Add panko and toss to coat. Do NOT brown.
  18. Sprinkle buttered panko and over top of macaroni.
  19. Bake at 350: F. until panko is golden brown and mixture is bubbly, about 25-30 minutes.
  20. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Makes 4 servings.
Recipe by The Kitchen Prescription at