The Best Baking Pan To Use For Super Crispy Mac And Cheese

When it comes to macaroni and cheese, aka the holy grail of starchy side dishes, a creamy texture is certainly an essential component, however, baking seems to be the favored cooking method these days as this achieves a crispy topping. Like the folks that prefer the crispy edges of a brownie instead of the gooey centers, there's a significant contingent of people fighting for the edge pieces of this dish too. Add to this that a casserole dish of mac and cheese can feed more people compared to a large pot taking up real estate on the stovetop, and it's easy to see why baked macaroni and cheese is the way to go. But what if you could offer your friends and family an even crispier version of this dish? In fact, you can, and all it takes is a pretty simple swap. 

When whipping up your next batch of mac and cheese, look at the baking dish you're using and reassess. Instead of grabbing the deepest baking dish, lean for something more shallow, such as a baking sheet. Yeah, we said it! The shallower, the crispier all around, not just the tops.

Grab a baking sheet

When preparing to dump the creamy mixture of macaroni and cheese into its baking vessel, it's best to work with a baking sheet instead of a deep casserole dish. Remember, the shallow-er the baking dish, the more surface area the pasta has, leaving you with thinner yet wider slices, and less space for a creamy interior to take over. For the best results, try using an 18x13-inch baking sheet. Anything smaller may cause your mac and cheese to overflow and not fit, which yields a mess.

For even more crispy goodness, pay attention to the material of the pan as well. An aluminum sheet pan will spread heat much more evenly, consistently, and intensely compared to baking dishes made of glass or ceramic. This will also help your crisp up more evenly.

Lastly, for the ultimate crispiness, don't hold back on the breadcrumbs. Load them onto your noodles, ensuring a toasty topping with slightly charred noodles and crunchy cheese edges all around. Is there anything better? We don't think so.