I’ve probably tried a gazillion mac and cheese recipes. It’s my ultimate comfort food, the one dish I’d want with me on a deserted island. Plus, the variations are endless. There’s everything from simple three-ingredient mac and cheese to fancy truffle-infused options.

This version, though, THIS version is so good, so silky, so creamy I have to stop myself from rubbing it all over my body. It’s made with three cheese, topped with buttery cracker crumbs, and baked until bubbling and golden.

Give it a try and see if you don’t want to come along with me on a deserted island to do nothing but frolic in the surf and eat mac and cheese at sunset.

david caricature

Why Our Testers Loved This

The testers loved this “dressed up version of the homey classic” and couldn’t get enough of the rich and creamy pasta.

Barbara H. joined in with her comment, “The deeply satisfying crunch of that top layer followed by the umami creaminess of the sauce had everyone eating far more of this dish than expected.”

What You’ll Need to Make This

Ingredients for Brie mac and cheese -- Brie, pasta, crackers, butter, milk, flour, cheese, butter, garlic powder, and Dijon.
  • Buttery crackers–To easily crush the crackers, place them in a resealable bag and smash or roll with a rolling pin.
  • Brie–To remove the rind from the cheese, use a small sharp knife, and work your way around the wheel, trimming as you go.
  • Cheese–A combination of Parmesan and Alpine cheese is used here. For best results, don’t use pre-shredded cheese, as it doesn’t melt well.
  • Pasta–You can use your favorite small pasta shape here, such as elbows or shells. The pasta will continue to cook while baking, so be sure to only cook it until barely tender, about 2 minutes less than the package suggests.

How to Make This Recipe

A person pouring butter into a bowl of cracker crumbs and butter melting in a pot on the stove.
  1. Mix the crackers and 2 tablespoons butter together in a small bowl. Heat the oven to 375°F and line a baking sheet with parchment. Combine the Brie and other cheeses in a medium bowl.
  2. Melt the butter in a medium pot.
Flour being added to melted butter in a pot, and the roux being whisked.
  1. Add the flour to the melted butter.
  2. Whisk in the flour and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
Milk being poured into a roux in a pot, then cheese piled on top of the roux in the same pot.
  1. Whisk in the milk, mustard, and garlic powder. Cook until thickened.
  2. Add the cheese.
A pot of cheese sauce being stirred and macaroni added to the pot of cheese sauce.
  1. Stir until the sauce is smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  2. Stir the pasta into the cheese sauce.
Cheese sauce being stirred into pasta and a skillet of mac and cheese being topped with cracker crumbs.
  1. Toss until the pasta is completely coated with cheese sauce.
  2. Pour the pasta into a baking dish and top with the cracker mixture. Bake until bubbling and golden brown. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Common Questions

What is Alpine cheese?

Alpine cheese, as the name suggests, comes from the Alps. They all have a pleasant toothsome texture (somewhere between firm and soft), a marvelous nutty flavor, and, best of all, the ability to melt beautifully. Some of the most popular examples that work beautifully in this recipe are Emmenthal, Gruyére, and Comte.

Can I double the recipe?

Yes. If you prefer a lighter sauce, you can simply double the amount of pasta, or you can double the entire recipe. Bake it in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

How do I avoid grainy cheese sauce?

The temperature of your sauce and the cheese are two of the biggest culprits behind grainy cheese sauce. When adding your cheese, make sure your sauce is over very low heat. You can even pull it off the heat while you’re stirring the cheese in.

This recipe calls for a lot of cheese. Stir it in one large handful at a time, letting it melt before adding more, to help give the sauce a smooth consistency.

What should I serve with this?

The Brie macaroni and cheese is very rich, so pair this with a lightly dressed arugula salad, if offering it as an entree. If you are serving it as a side, offer small portions alongside crispy fried chicken or oven-baked ribs.

Helpful Tips

  • This makes a very thick, rich Brie macaroni and cheese with plenty of sauce. Add more pasta for a less saucy version.
  • Store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, place the mac and cheese in a baking dish and rewarm in a 350°F oven until heated through.
A small cast-iron skillet filled with Brie mac and cheese with a fork digging into it.
: Olivia Carney

More Great Mac and Cheese Recipes

Write a Review

If you make this recipe, or any dish on LC, consider leaving a review, a star rating, and your best photo in the comments below. I love hearing from you.–David

A small cast-iron skillet filled with Brie mac and cheese with a fork digging into it.

Brie Mac and Cheese

5 / 5 votes
Made with three types of cheese and topped with a buttery cracker crust, this is the creamiest, cheesiest mac and cheese you're ever going to try.
David Leite
Servings4 servings
Calories980 kcal
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time1 hour


For the cracker crust

  • 1 sleeve buttery crackers, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons (1 oz) salted butter, melted

For the Brie mac and cheese

  • Two (8-ounce) rounds double crème Brie
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup finely grated Alpine cheese, such as Grand Cru, Jarlsberg, Emmental, or Gruyère
  • 3 tablespoons (1 1/2 oz) unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk, plus more if needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 ounces macaroni, or other small pasta, cooked just under al dente
  • Dried parsley, for garnish


Make the cracker crust

  • In a small bowl, mix together the crushed crackers and butter.

Make the Brie mac and cheese

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Trim the rinds from the Brie and cut it into small pieces. Add the Parmesan and Alpine cheese to the Brie and mix to combine.
  • In a medium pot over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the flour and mix it until combined. Cook the mixture, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes. (This is important to cook off the raw-flour taste.)
  • Whisk in the milk, mustard, and garlic powder and continue to cook, stirring, until the sauce starts to thicken, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Toss in the cheese mixture one handful at a time and stir until completely melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (If the sauce is too thick, add milk, 1/4 cup at a time, until the desired consistency is achieved.)
  • Add the cooked pasta to the pot and toss with the sauce until well coated.
  • Spoon the pasta mixture into an ovenproof dish, top with the crushed crackers, and bake until the mac and cheese is bubbling and the crust is golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Garnish with parsley and serve.


  1. Add more pasta–This makes a very thick, rich mac and cheese with plenty of sauce. Add more pasta for a less saucy version, or double it and bake it in a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish.
  2. Storage and reheating–Store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, place the mac and cheese in a baking dish and rewarm in a 350°F oven until heated through.
The Art of the Board Cookbook

Adapted From

The Art of the Board

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Serving: 1 portionCalories: 980 kcalCarbohydrates: 41 gProtein: 48 gFat: 69 gSaturated Fat: 41 gMonounsaturated Fat: 19 gTrans Fat: 1 gCholesterol: 215 mgSodium: 1596 mgFiber: 2 gSugar: 7 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2022 Olivia Carney. Photos © 2023 David Leite. Photo © 2022 Olivia Carney. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

This mac and cheese with Brie is really tasty due to the combination of big flavour cheeses – Brie, Parmesan, and (in our case) raclette. And it’s so rich and creamy it should come with a warning!

Small portions (3/4 cup each) were enough for us, and it would be perfect served with lightly dressed greens (think arugula). It would also work well as a side dish.

We have yet another favorite mac & cheese recipe. The deeply satisfying crunch of that top layer followed by the umami creaminess of the sauce had everyone eating far more of this dish than expected; why we hadn’t thought to use Brie in mac & cheese before is beyond me.

Surprisingly, the rind melted right into the sauce and wasn’t noticeable by those in the family who don’t care for it. The sauce produced enough for the entire pound of pasta, especially as I had to thin it with another cup and a half of milk, so there was plenty to enjoy, and the amount of crumb crust easily covered our slightly larger than 9-by-13-inch casserole dish. I will add more Dijon in the future.

This cracker-crusted mac and Brie is a delicious, dressed-up version of the homey classic. I doubled this recipe to make enough for our family gathering (and to use up the whole pound of pasta!), I found the recipe straightforward, although the wonderfully large amount of cheese meant I spent quite a bit of time grating.

For the sake of simplicity in serving a larger crowd, I just dumped everything into a 9-by-13-inch pan to bake. At first, I worried that the ratio of cheese sauce to noodles might be high, but it turned out perfectly–creamy, sophisticated, and comforting.

To take this recipe to the next level of wow, in the future, I think I’ll:

  1. Lightly toast the crackers with butter and perhaps some garlic before adding them on top of the noodles
  2. Add in the cheese more gradually to ensure a silky sauce
  3. Throw a bit of hot sauce in with the cheese mixture

I’ll absolutely be making this again soon!

About David Leite

I count myself lucky to have received three James Beard Awards for my writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. My work has also appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Confused by step 2. I do not see anywhere that you actually use the sheet pan with the parchment paper…

    1. Harry, the sheet pan is to place your place your ovenproof dish on top of. The melting cheese might bubble over, and this helps to save you from any oven cleanup. If you make it, please let us know how it turns out.

        1. Fantastic, Harry! I am so thrilled that you enjoyed this, and it was a huge hit in my house as well.

    1. Lynn, if you are able to resist the temptation to devour this immediately, you should be able to freeze this. We haven’t tested freezing this mac and cheese, and I would suggest giving it a few extra minutes to bake from frozen. If you try it, please let us know how it turns out.

  2. Any guidance on what a cup of grated Parm or Gruyere should weigh? Should I be compacting as I measure or measure as it comes from the grater?

    I’m not familiar with double cream Brie. I only had one choice at Trader Joes but I was surprised by how firm it was. I got some but I also got a nice ripe triple cream as well since it seemed so much more “right” as a Brie. Which would you recommend?

    We were looking forward to having this for dinner tonight but I’ll postpone it to be clear about what I’m doing and to get the best result.

    Thanks for your help!

    1. Rainey, if you toggle to the metric amounts on the recipe, it calls for 100 grams/3.5 ounces of parmesan and 113 grams/4 ounces of Alpine cheese. This should give you a more accurate amount of cheese to grate. I think either Brie would work well, but the triple cream might give you a creamier texture. I do hope you love this recipe as much as we do. It is so good and a huge hit in my house.