Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese

April 10, 2019
What happens when leftover ham and Mom's macaroni and cheese collide?  Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese deliciousness, that's what!  Homemade mac and cheese with white sauce from scratch, lots of melty cheese, and the smoky flavor of ham combine beautifully for one super tasty dish.
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Serving Spoon of Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese Image

When I decided to toss some ham in with my Mom's homemade macaroni and cheese recipe, I knew it would be good.  But I didn't know it would be this good.  Yes, homemade mac and cheese with white sauce from scratch, lots of melty cheese, and the smoky flavor of ham combine beautifully for one super tasty dish.

I made this the other night for dinner on a whim when I had some ham in the refrigerator that needed to be used up.

Homemade mac and cheese with white sauce from scratch, lots of melty cheese, and the smoky flavor of ham combine beautifully for one super tasty dish.

And I'm happy to say it received rave reviews from the family.

Our family absolutely adores my Mom's macaroni and cheese, but I think they loved this Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese version even more.  There's just something about the way the melty cheese and smoky flavor of the ham blend together that tastes amazing.

There were immediate requests put in for me to make this again.  So I do believe it's going to have to go into the regular dinner recipe rotation, even when there's not leftover ham around to use up.

Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese in Baking Dish Image

Just how do you make this super tasty baked ham macaroni and cheese?  Just like you make Mom's original recipe, but with a good dose of chopped ham added in and a little bit different mixture of cheese.

Simply start by boiling macaroni noodles and placing half of them in the bottom of a baking dish.

Layer of Macaroni in Baking Dish to Make Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese Image

Then create two sets of layers of macaroni, ham, and cheese in the baking dish.

Sprinkle on chopped leftover ham on top of the macaroni.  I use about 2 cups of chopped ham total, but you could use a little less or a little more if you'd like.

How to Make Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese Image

Then sprinkle on a layer of shredded cheese.

I use a combination of Vermont white sharp cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese.  The cheddar adds rich flavor, while the Monterey Jack adds a more smooth meltiness to the dish. 

Adding a Layer of Shredded Cheese to Make Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese Image

Repeat these layers.

And then finally, whip up a quick white sauce with butter, milk and a little bit of flour, salt, and pepper.  Pour the creamy sauce all over the top of the macaroni, ham, and cheese layers.

The sauce will run down through the macaroni and bring creaminess all throughout the macaroni and cheese.

Homemade White Sauce in a Saucepan Image

Toss a little bit more shredded cheese on top of the white sauce and then bake it all up.

I like our Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese to get really bubbly around the edges with lots of spots of nice golden brown on the top, which takes about 45 minutes in the oven.

You can change up the texture of the finished baked mac and cheese by changing up when you bake it.

It's definitely a beautiful thing of deliciousness when leftover ham and Mom's macaroni and cheese collide.

For creamier macaroni and cheese, bake it immediately after it's been assembled.  For "firmer" macaroni and cheese, cover and refrigerate it overnight or for at least 4-6 hours before putting in the oven to bake.  The ingredients meld together a bit after being refrigerated and yield a firmer result.

Personally, we enjoy it on the firmer side.  So I do try to assemble everything at least a few hours before I plan to bake it.

But if you don't have time to prepare it in advance?  No problem - it sure tastes good either way.

Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese Just Out of the Oven Image

Once the Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese is out of the oven, get ready to dig in.

Because it's definitely a beautiful thing of deliciousness when leftover ham and Mom's macaroni and cheese collide.  Homemade mac and cheese and the smokiness of ham combine just perfectly for fantastic flavor.

It's a fabulous way to enjoy leftover ham ... and one super tasty dinner dish the family will ask for again and again. 

Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Ham Image
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Baked Ham Macaroni and Cheese
(Printable recipe)
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 c. (8 oz.) uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 2 c. shredded Vermont white sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 c. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 1/2  to 2 c. chopped ham
  • 1/4 c. unsalted butter
  • 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 c. whole milk
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. black pepper
Directions
  1. PREPARE MACARONI & CHEESE LAYERS:  Cook macaroni in salted water; drain.
  2. Combine shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese.  In a 1 & 1/2-quart baking dish coated with non-stick cooking spray, layer macaroni, ham, and cheese in this order: 1. 1/2 of the macaroni, 2. 1/2 of the ham, 3. one cup cheese, 4. remaining macaroni, 5. remaining ham, and 6. one cup cheese. Set aside.
  3. PREPARE WHITE SAUCE: Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat and whisk in flour. Return to heat and gradually whisk in milk. Add salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, stirring; boil gently for about one minute until sauce is thickened.
  4. Pour white sauce evenly over the top of the macaroni. Top with remaining one cup cheese.
  5. For creamy macaroni and cheese, bake immediately.  For "firmer" macaroni and cheese, cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4-6 hours before baking.
  6. BAKE:  Bake at 375 for 35-45 minutes until cheese is melted and top is lightly browned.
Note:  For a 9x13-inch pan, I make 1 & 1/2 times the recipe.

Enjoy!

This post is linked with Weekend PotluckMeal Plan Monday.

1 comment

  1. Baked Ham Mac N Cheese what a great marriage, they really go together! Hope you have a very special holiday and thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday.
    Miz Helen

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