The 10 Best Mac and Cheese Dishes in the United States

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The 10 Best Mac and Cheese Dishes in the United States
Many would argue that macaroni and cheese is a classically American dish, but its origins actually date back to long before the United States was a country. The earliest mentions of pasta with cheese and butter is found in 14th century cookbooks in England, Italy, and France. By 1937, Kraft macaroni and cheese came onto the market in the United States and sold for 19 cents a box. Since then, the United States has found hundreds of ways to make this classic dish. We’ve rounded up some of the best mac and cheese in the country—many of which will have you craving a bowl.
Courtesy of Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill
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    A Classic Combination
    Many would argue that macaroni and cheese is a classically American dish, but its origins actually date back to long before the United States was a country. The earliest mentions of pasta with cheese and butter is found in 14th century cookbooks in England, Italy, and France. By 1937, Kraft macaroni and cheese came onto the market in the United States and sold for 19 cents a box. Since then, the United States has found hundreds of ways to make this classic dish. We’ve rounded up some of the best mac and cheese in the country—many of which will have you craving a bowl.

    Courtesy of Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill
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    Blue Plate (San Francisco, CA)
    For the past 17 years, Blue Plate has been serving elevated classic American food like smoked trout deviled eggs, meatloaf, and macaroni and cheese. We say elevated because its mac has three delicious cheeses: grana padano, cheddar, and murcia al vino, a drunken Spanish goat cheese.

    Plan Your Trip: San Francisco
    Courtesy of Blue Plate
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    OP Wurst (Portland, OR)
    Hot dogs and macaroni and cheese are a classic combination—but OP Wurst takes it to the next level. Well-known charcuterie company Olympia Provisions sources local ingredients for its housemade dogs, topping them with everything from papaya salad and red curry ketchup to macaroni and cheese. For those who are willing to go to the next level, during truffle season, it tops each mac dog with flecks of black truffle. 

    Plan Your Trip: Portland

    Photo by @judiaann
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    Local 149 (Boston, MA)
    It’s hard to imagine macaroni and cheese being any more indulgent than it already is, but Local 149 has accepted the challenge by turning them into fritters. The mixture is rolled in bread crumbs, fried, and then served with housemade sriracha. 

    Plan Your Trip: Boston
    Courtesy of Local 149
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    Cochon Butcher (New Orleans, LA)
    Cochon is one of the most celebrated restaurants in New Orleans, and its younger sister Cochon Butcher is worth its share of praise, too. The butcher shop and casual restaurant prides itself on housemade meats, sausages, and salami but offers a solid mix of sandwiches and, of course, macaroni and cheese. Its bowl of mac is a nod to its devotion to meat, made with aged provolone, two types of cheddar, and tossed with a healthy serving of pancetta. 

    Plan Your Trip: New Orleans

    Photo by Erin B./Yelp
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    The Little Jewel of New Orleans (Los Angeles, CA)
    It may seem odd to head to Chinatown in Los Angeles to satisfy your southern food cravings, but once you dive into a bowl of crawfish mac and cheese at The Little Jewel of New Orleans, you’ll forget that you’re in California. Traditional elbow noodles are swapped out for corkscrew pasta that holds all of the crawfish cheese sauce in its crevices. If we were you, we’d pair it with a fried shrimp po’boy.  

    Plan Your Trip: Los Angeles

    Photo by Richard L./Yelp
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    4505 Burgers & BBQ (San Francisco, CA)
    If you’ve ever felt like your mac and cheese just wasn't porky and indulgent enough, 4505 Burgers & BBQ is the place for you. It doesn’t offer a standard bowl of mac but instead tosses it with chunks of hot dog, forms it into a square, rolls it in panko bread crumbs, and fries it. The end result is a giant chunk of mac and cheese called "frankaroni." If you’re feeling particularly ambitious, ask for its secret menu Big Mac burger: a double cheeseburger stacked with square of frankaroni. 

    Plan Your Trip: San Francisco

    Photo by @postmates
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    Kuma’s Corner (Chicago, IL)
    Kuma’s Corner is well known in the windy city for their burgers, but its mac and cheese is worth a visit, too. The bowl of mac starts with a blend of Monterey Jack, Gouda, and cheddar cheeses. After that, you can customize the add-ins to your mood. Broccoli, Andouille sausage, and roasted red pepper are among the 12 available additions. 

    Plan Your Trip: Chicago
    Courtesy of Kuma’s Corner
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    Highland Tap and Burger (Denver, CO)
    This beer-centric Denver restaurant incorporates the drink into its mac and cheese. IPA, fontina, aged white cheddar, and Parmesan are tossed with pasta shells, which are the perfect shape for holding onto chunks of the optional thick-cut applewood-smoked bacon. 

    Plan Your Trip: Denver

    Photo by Helene K./Yelp
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    MacBar (New York, NY)
    There are far more than a dozen ways to make mac and cheese, but MacBar has narrowed it down to just 12 and doesn’t offer anything else. Take your pick from lobster mac, duck confit mac, or a mushroom and truffle mac. Bring a friend or two—you’re going to want to try them all. 

    Plan Your Trip: New York City

    Photo by @eatmenyc
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    Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill (Austin, TX)
    Sometimes, one bowl of mac and cheese just won’t cut it. At Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill, you can have an entrée of green chili macaroni with a side of baked pimento cheese macaroni—both topped with bacon gratin. We’d recommend a nap after that meal. 

    Plan Your Trip: Austin
    Courtesy of Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill
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