Mid November and the fall vibes are strong around here! I’m already forgetting why I was sad that summer is over. Life is just so cozy right now and I love it. With only 8 more days until Thanksgiving, the cozy recipes are bubbling out of my kitchen. And I am more than a little obsessed with this one right here. Pumpkin Cheddar Lager Mac & Cheese. Imagine rich, cheesy cheddar fondue, but with noodles. Oh yeah.
How to make Pumpkin Cheddar Lager Mac & Cheese
Cheese fondue is a very rare treat, but one that I savor. And this mac & cheese gives all the feels of a decadent fondue, plus pumpkin cause, you know – fall. Traditional fondue starts with garlic and either wine or beer, and that’s exactly how this recipe starts.
Once you get the beer and garlic sizzling in a little butter, stir in the dry mustard and pumpkin. The sharp cheddar goes in last. Once you get a creamy consistency, it’s time to toss it with your pasta. You can serve this mac & cheese directly from the stovetop. Personally, I like to bake my mac for a few minutes just to get a little bit of crust on top.
The best ingredients for this Mac & Cheese
The beer you choose matters in this recipe. A quality lager is important, but don’t go crazy with expensive ones. You’re cooking with it, not drinking it! My favorites for this Pumpkin Sharp Cheddar Mac & Cheese are Samuel Adams and Yuengling. They lend a hoppy, earthy flavor to the cheese sauce without being overpowering.
That said, if you are a beer lover, you might have fun with a darker beer like Guinness. The darker the beer, the more you’re going to taste it in this dish. Guinness is kind of amazing, in my personal opinion. But choose what you like.
When choosing a cheddar cheese, go as sharp as you can! My favorite sharp cheddar for cooking is Cabot.
I’m thinking that this Pumpkin Cheddar Lager Mac & Cheese is going to end up on our Thanksgiving table this year. The kids are so complainy about traditional side dishes (I know, so rude), so I know that this dish will get gobbled up in no time. No pun intended.
If you make this Pumpkin Cheddar Lager Mac & Cheese, I’d love to hear your thoughts! Tag me in your photos and drop a rating down below. Enjoy!
Pumpkin Cheddar Lager Mac & Cheese
- 1 lb. elbow macaroni
- 3 cups sharp cheddar cheese grated
- 4 oz. cream cheese
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 bottle (12 oz.) lager beer
- 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
- 2 Tbsp. flour
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1/2 tsp. dry mustard
- 1 tsp. salt
- Preheat oven to 400. Cook and drain the pasta according to package directions.
- In a large pot, melt butter over medium-low heat.
- Whisk in the garlic and flour. Whisk until bubbling, about 1 minute.
- Whisk in the beer, pumpkin puree, dry mustard and salt.
- Lower the heat and stir in the cheeses. Stir until smooth. Add the pasta.
- Transfer the mixture to a baking dish. Bake 10-15 minutes, until bubbling.