Fried Mac and Cheese Balls

You've all been patiently waiting! If you've ever had these at TGI Friday's or Cheesecake Factory, you already know how good they are. The recipe is very easy, believe it or not - but it is A LOT easier if you have a deep fryer. I got my Oster deep fryer from Target (on sale!) and you can find it here from Walmart.
I definitely recommend deep fryers for recipes such as this one, since it may be a little easier than frying them in a big pot. Anything is possible, though! Be sure to have an oil thermometer if you are not using a deep fryer.

Prep time: 30 minutes
Still time: Overnight (10-12 hours)
Cook time: 14-16 minutes
Serves: 30 Large balls (whew, that sounds wrong!)
*It is very easy to cut this recipe in half!*

Use your favorite Mac and Cheese recipe -- Mine is below
1 lb elbow pasta
1 stick butter
1/2 cup flour
6 cups milk
16 oz cheese, shredded (I used 8 oz white cheddar & 8 oz marble jack)
1/4 cup pimentos
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp red pepper flakes
Salt & pepper, to taste
*the above is what you need for day 1*
4-6 eggs, whisked - add 1 tbs water to egg wash
2 cups seasoned bread crumbs
Canola oil, for frying
*Marinara or Cheese sauce for dipping (optional)


1. Boil pasta according to box. Drain and place into baking dish.

2. In a large pot, melt butter on medium heat. Add flour to create a roux, and mix well until there are no lumps. Turn heat down to medium-low and add milk, 1 cup at a time. Continuously stir until thickened.

3. Once all of the milk is stirred into the pot, remove from heat and add cheese, stirring until melted. Add pimentos, paprika, pepper flakes, salt and pepper and stir.

4. Pour cheese sauce into baking dish with pasta. Sir until sauce is evenly distributed. Cover dish with foil/clear wrap and place into refrigerator for 2 hours.

5. Once the mac and cheese has had time to harden up, use an ice cream scooper to create ball shapes. Place each boil on baking sheet lined with wax paper.

6. FREEZE mac and cheese balls OVERNIGHT.

*The next day*

7. Whisk eggs into a small, deep bowl. Pour bread crumbs into separate bowl. Place each ball, one at a time, into the egg wash and then into the bread crumb mixture. REPEAT - it is great to double dip these, which will create a nice crunchy outer layer and keep the cheese from oozing out.

8. Place mac and cheese balls back into the freezer until you are ready to fry.

9. Heat oil to 325 degrees. When hot, fry 4 balls at a time for 15-16 minutes until golden brown. The center should be hot and creamy - you can check by sticking a tooth pic in them.

Choose to serve with or without dipping sauce.

Enjoy some pics below!

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