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Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese

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I have received information and materials from JOHNSON & JOHNSON CONSUMER, Inc., McNeil Nutritionals, LLC Subsidiary the makers of LACTAID®. The opinions stated are my own. This is a sponsored post and I was compensated by POPSUGAR to write it.

Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese that’s made with real milk and cheese but is lactose free. It’s perfect to satisfy those comfort food cravings without messing with your stomach.

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Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese (and gluten free). From What The Fork Food Blog | whattheforkfoodblog.com

My daughter, Kelsey, is part of the one in five Americans diagnosed as lactose intolerant – she was diagnosed last summer. Since then, she’s maintained a mostly dairy free diet. However, there are times where there’s just no satisfying substitute for real dairy.

Classic example – macaroni and cheese. We’ve tried all kinds of dairy free alternatives and have been less than impressed with results. Then last fall, we discovered that aged cheddar cheese is naturally lactose free. (Why didn’t I know that earlier?!)

Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese (and gluten free). From What The Fork Food Blog | whattheforkfoodblog.com

Literally, a light-bulb went off. I don’t have to make dairy free macaroni and cheese, I can just make lactose free macaroni and cheese! Thanks to products like LACTAID®, I can still make some family favorites without having to fully convert them to be dairy free.

LACTAID® Milk is perfect in the lactose free macaroni and cheese. You just can’t mimic that comforting, creamy, cheesy goodness without the milk and cheese.

Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese (and gluten free). From What The Fork Food Blog | whattheforkfoodblog.com

Also, in case you’re wondering, there’s no difference in taste between LACTAID® and non- LACTAID® products. If somebody didn’t tell you, you really wouldn’t know.

I also like to use the LACTAID® cottage cheese in lasagna. My Polish husband’s great-grandmother’s lasagna recipe is called “American Lasagna” and is made with cottage cheese instead of ricotta – it’s SO good! If your recipe just calls for ricotta, you can use the LACTAID® cottage cheese in place of that.

Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese (and gluten free). From What The Fork Food Blog | whattheforkfoodblog.com

But let’s get back to this MAC AND CHEESE. I like to bake my macaroni and cheese since that’s the way I grew up with it.

True story: my husband had NEVER had baked macaroni and cheese before I started making it for him. How is that even possible?? All those years of missing out…

Baked macaroni and cheese is totally the way to go. The edges get nice and crispy/crunchy – those are my favorite pieces. A perfect bite includes a crispy piece of macaroni, some creamy pieces of macaroni, and some of the crunchy topping. That right there is the definition of comfort food, my friends. Enjoy!

Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese (and gluten free). From What The Fork Food Blog | whattheforkfoodblog.com

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Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese (and gluten free). From What The Fork Food Blog | whattheforkfoodblog.com

Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese

Yield: Serves 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese that’s made with real milk and cheese but is lactose free. It’s perfect to satisfy those comfort food cravings.

Ingredients

  • 8 oz. gluten free macaroni
  • ¼ C ghee or dairy free butter
  • ¼ C gluten free all-purpose flour
  • 2 C LACTAID® milk
  • ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • ¼ tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 C cheddar cheese*
  • ½ C gluten free bread crumbs
  • 2 Tbsp ghee or dairy free butter, melted

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a baking dish with non-stick spray (use a baking dish that holds 2 quarts).
  2. Cook the macaroni according to package directions for al dente pasta (you could even cook it a minute less). Drain the macaroni when cooked and set aside.
  3. Add ¼ C ghee or dairy free butter to the empty pasta pot and heat over medium heat. When the ghee is melted, whisk in the gluten free flour and cook for 1 minute. Slowly pour and whisk in the LACTAID® milk.
  4. Heat the milk, whisking almost constantly until it comes to a simmer. Continue to simmer until the milk mixture thickens. The milk mixture is thick enough when it can hold a line on a spoon when you run your finger through it without it running. It will take about 5-10 minutes.
  5. When the milk has thickened, remove it from the heat and stir in the cheddar cheese. Mix until it melts completely. Stir in the macaroni and mix until the macaroni is completely coated with the cheese sauce.
  6. Transfer the macaroni to the prepared baking dish. In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs and 2 tablespoons of melted ghee. Stir to coat the breadcrumbs. Sprinkle the bread crumbs evenly over the macaroni and cheese.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes until the top is browned and cheese sauce is bubbling.

Notes

*Real cheddar cheese is naturally lactose free. Use a good quality cheddar and look for one labeled with 0g lactose/serving.

This recipe also calls for ghee or dairy free butter. Ghee is a lactose free product which is what I prefer to use when I make this recipe.

Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving:Calories: 280Total Fat: 25gCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 14g
Gluten Free and Lactose Free Macaroni and Cheese from What The Fork Food Blog | whattheforkfoodblog.com | Sponsored by Lactaid |

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Patricia Cooke

Thursday 4th of March 2021

Was wondering why gluten free products? I have a lactose malabsorption.. can’t tolerate lactaid, nor any milk products(whey, curds, casein). Any suggestions?

Val

Thursday 2nd of July 2020

This recipe is great! I've made it a few times, as I'm lactose intolerant and was looking for a non-vegan mac that I can make at home. I just have two things to note.

The first is that the ingredient list calls for salt, but nowhere in the recipe does it tell you when to add it. I've been using salted butter in the roux, and then adding additional salt as needed after the cheese is mixed in. I also added dijon mustard which gives a nice zing to the sauce that I believe was missing.

The second is that I recommend ONLY using panko breadcrumbs for the topping. We tried regular breadcrumbs initially and it weighed the whole dish down a ton. Panko are much crispier and will lead to a better end result in my experience.

Danielle

Monday 14th of October 2019

Believe it or not, lactose is the only sugar in cheese (except specialty cheeses like cranberry holiday cheese or chocolate chip cheese) so because of this the sugar content on the nutrition label tells you how much lactose is in the cheese (0g sugar= 0g lactose). Also, real butter is almost always safe for people with lactose intolerance, I'm lactose intolerant and have no issues. People who are EXTREMELY sensitive may have a problem with butter and if so ghee is a great substitute. Just sharing because a common misconception about people who are lactose intolerant is that they can't have any dairy/cheese or much of anything.

Chris

Wednesday 4th of September 2019

You lost me at lactose free cheese. This is theoretical IMHO, informed by 40 years of lactose avoidance. I have yet to find an aged cheese I can repeatedly consume without affect.

Shay

Thursday 12th of September 2019

I use cheddar that has 0g lactose listed on the label, like Cabot.

Sony

Wednesday 8th of August 2018

I have been lactose intolerance for over 20 years. But did not know that aged cheese was LF. I'm glad because I have seen product that are 0g but thought nothing of it. Now I can pick up some other products to have in my refrigerator to enjoy. Thanks for the info! 😊

Sharon

Tuesday 9th of October 2018

You're very welcome!

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