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Oct 20, 2017

Crab Macaroni and Cheese

This crab macaroni and cheese recipe takes a favorite comfort food and turns it into a fabulous elegant meal.

This crab macaroni and cheese recipe takes a favorite comfort food and turns it into a fabulous elegant meal.

Make this crab macaroni and cheese for dinner, and all you'd need is a green salad to go with it for a complete meal.

This mac and cheese is loaded with fontina cheese as well as a pound of lump crab meat. It's topped with panko bread crumbs that have been tossed with melted butter and Italian parsley.  And then the whole dish is baked until crispy on top and bubbly and creamy inside.

This crab macaroni and cheese recipe takes a favorite comfort food and turns it into a fabulous elegant meal.

One of my favorite ingredients in this macaroni and cheese is the fontina. It has a wonderful flavor, and is great both on a cheese platter and for cooking. I used it on this pizza with amazing results. I don't know why I don't cook with it more often.

Note: For the crab, I like to use the Chicken of the Sea "Super Lump" crab. It doesn't need picking over for shells, and the pieces are pretty big. I get it at Costco (it's refrigerated). For a truly luxurious version of this recipe, you could use crab legs or lobster meat.

When it comes to macaroni and cheese, I much prefer the baked version over the stove top version. There's something about the crusty top and the texture of the baked sauce and pasta that makes it so much tastier, at least to me.

How about you? Are you okay with the stove top version, or do you prefer your mac and cheese baked?

This month, the Fish Fridays group is making fish dishes with pasta. Coincidentally, we made fish with pasta exactly one year ago! Be sure to check out my angel hair pasta with halibut.

After my recipe, you'll find more fish and pasta dishes you will want to try.

Crab Macaroni and Cheese

Crab Macaroni and Cheese


  • 1 pound pasta, such as large or small shells
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/3 cup half and half
  • 2/3 cup dry white wine
  • 8 ounces fontina cheese
  • salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons chopped flat leaf (Italian) parsley, plus more for garnish
  • 1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat (see Note)


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and butter a 13 inch by 9 inch casserole.
  2. In a large sauce pan, cook the pasta to al dente, according to the package directions.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, melt 5 tablespoons of the butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until the onion is softened but not browned.
  4. Add the flour and cook, whisking constantly, for about a minute. Whisk in the half and half and the wine. Increase the heat to medium, and cook until thickened, about 3 to 5 minutes. Take the pan off of the heat, add all but 1/2 cup of the cheese, and stir until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Melt the final tablespoon of the butter in a small skillet, add the panko, and cook until lightly golden. Remove the pan from the heat, add the parsley, and stir.
  6. Thoroughly drain the pasta and add it to the cheese mixture and stir. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking pan and spread it from end to end. Sprinkle it with the remaining fontina. Top with the panko mixture.
  7. Bake the macaroni and cheese for 25 minutes, until bubbly. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Garnish with the rest of the parsley.
Yield: 6 servings

Recipe inspired by from Nordstrom 

This crab macaroni and cheese recipe takes a favorite comfort food and turns it into a fabulous elegant meal.

Would you like to comment?

  1. I love, love, love crab mac and cheese! And Fontina! *swoon*

  2. Oh this mac and cheese looks so good and delicious!

  3. Sounds like a delicious twist on mac and cheese, and love the crispy top too.

  4. We are a baked mac and cheese family and I LOVE the addition of crab meat to this dish.

  5. What a gorgeous looking dish Karen, love it!

  6. The season is perfect for comfort food and this one definitely hit the spot! Exceptional work dear! xoxo



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