You have made the recipe for macaroni and cheese carefully however you have ended up with a lot of milk in the dish and it has too much liquid.
What do you do?
Although it is not very common, it has happened to me.
To fix too much milk in macaroni and cheese, cook your dish a few minutes longer to evaporate the excess milk. You can also add evaporated milk, cheese, cornstarch, roux, or bechamel sauce, or simply temper an egg yolk and mix it well in your macaroni and cheese.
In this article let us look into some of the things that can be done if you have ended up with too much milk in macaroni and cheese.
What do you do if you add too much milk to macaroni and cheese?
Macaroni and cheese are best savored when the sauce is smooth, creamy, and deliciously rich in flavors. A sauce that coats that pasta well in one is one that is more appealing than macaroni floating in a white creamy sauce devoid of thickness.
Let us look at some of the ways we can thicken the ingredients in macaroni and cheese.
1. Boil away excess Milk
One of the most easiest ways is to let the milk simmer over low to medium heat. This will allow the milk to lose its moisture by boiling away the water content and thereby thickening the milk. This can be one of the easiest approaches to the solution if you do not have enough things in the pantry. However, there are a few challenges you might face with this method.
- The easiest method of thickening milk is if you do not have enough ingredients in the pantry.
- No extra ingredients are required.
- It is an easy method if executed properly.
- This takes a lot of time, and thus consumes more energy. Thus, this method is not energy efficient.
- Time taken is more in this method.
- You risk burning your sauce or pasta if you do not stir the mixture constantly and do not use a heavy-bottomed pan.
- This method might be challenging if you are reducing milk in your microwave or oven and might have to switch to a stovetop.
- You can easily overcook your pasta and turn it into a mushy mess.
- This approach is not particularly good if you are using milk with lesser fat content. It works great with whole milk.
Pro Tip: The best time to thicken macaroni and cheese is when the sauce is cooking over the stovetop, or before you add in the pasta. Otherwise, you run the risk of overcooking your pasta.
Suggested Reading: Why Is My Mac And Cheese Dry? [And Here’s How To Fix It!]
2. Evaporated Milk
Evaporated milk is another good option to thicken your milk in macaroni cheese. As, evaporated milk is just milk with any liquid content. It is milk in a concentrated form. So, even a lesser amount goes a long way.
However, there are varieties of evaporated milk that are available such as whole milk powder, skimmed milk and low fat evaporated milk powder. Thus, you will have to select the right choice of evaporated milk.
The type of evaporated milk that you are going to use will be depending on the type of milk that has already been used. Such as milk with lower fat contents can be made rich using whole milk evaporated milk. Or, if you are going to add cream to your macaroni cheese then using skimmed or low-fat evaporated milk will also give you the desired result.
However, evaporated milk is not commonly found in all households.
Related Reading: Evaporated Milk In Macaroni And Cheese? [Here’s Why!]
Simply adding more cheese can also thicken the macaroni and cheese and adjust too much milk in the dish. Just add some more grated or cubed cheese to the dish. As they melt more easily than blocks of cheese.
You can even try mixing two or more cheeses to add depth and flavor. Cheese such as Velveeta, cream cheese, gruyere, cheddar, parmesan, and processed cheese are a few good options.
Suggested Reading: Do You Need Butter For Macaroni And Cheese? [Full Guide!]
Cornstarch is a thickening agent that helps to thicken gravies and sauces. It is more popular in Oriental cooking, however, it is also used fairly in European Styled cooking. Simply making a cornstarch slurry by mixing the desired amount of cornstarch in water and then adding it to the sauce will work.
You need to cook the sauce by giving it one or two boils lest the cornstarch is raw and the sauce will not have a very appetizing taste. Also, more cornstarch can be added to get the desired consistency of the sauce.
Suggested Reading: Why do Macroni and Cheese separate? [here’s What to Know!]
Those who know the magic of roux, know that it’s one of the easiest mixes that can be made with just a little fat and flour. It works wonders in many ways. It helps the addition of more fats and dairy into sauces without letting them separate.
It helps thicken sauces and gravies in the European style of cooking. Combine about 1 tablespoon of flour with 2 tablespoons of fat on low to medium heat in a pan, until the mixture is fluffy and the raw smell has gone. Incorporate the roux into the macaroni and cheese and let it simmer for a minute while stirring gently.
It will help to thicken the milk. You can then adjust the seasonings and cheese accordingly.
Related Reading: How to Make Roux for Macaroni and Cheese? [Step-by-Step Guide!]
6. Bechamel Sauce
Bechamel Sauce is one of the five major sauces of French cooking and a basic sauce for many other types of sauces. In fact, the cheese sauce for macaroni and cheese also has bechamel sauce as its base.
Thus, whipping up a small batch of bechamel sauce or adding the leftover bechamel sauce to your mix will balance the quantity of milk in macaroni and cheese. Although, you will have to adjust the cheese and the seasonings as the addition of became; the sauce has a tendency to make your macaroni and cheese a little bland.
7. Temper an egg yolk in the mix
Tempering an egg into dairy is the age-old method of making thickened custards, ice creams, and puddings. Most ice creams and custards made using eggs have a depth of flavor, texture as well as consistency.
- Break open an egg and separate the egg yolk from the egg white.
- Beat the egg yolk with a fork or spoon or a hand whisk.
- Temper the egg so as to prevent the egg from scrambling in the sauce.
- Take the macaroni and cheese sauce into a small bowl, and add in the egg yolk. Mix well.
- Incorporate the sauce mixed with the egg back into the dish.
- Over medium heat let the sauce thicken for a few minutes. This will help to cook the egg and thicken the sauce.
It is sometimes difficult the gauge the amount of milk that needs to be added to Kraft macaroni and cheese. If by chance you have ended up having too much milk in your KD. Then follow the given steps:
- Reduce the milk by heating it over low to medium heat.
- Add cheese preferably grated cheese, cubed cheese, or sliced cheese.
- Add in cream or evaporated milk, cornstarch, or all-purpose flour.
- Let it simmer.
- Take it off the heat as soon as you reach the desired consistency.
- Although, you should remember that the macaroni and cheese will thicken as it cools, thus leave some sauce so that it isn’t dry after it cools.
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- Is Pasta and Macaroni the Same? [Here’s the Difference!]
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