I don't want to give up "from scratch"

I’m in a pickle people.  I need help.
I spent YEARS getting this recipe right.
First, I had to get mom to come up off her “secret recipe”.
Then, I had to feed my husband 1000 different versions of it while I tweaked it to 1) by fixed in ONE pot instead of baking it, 2) used little elbow noodles so my kids would eat it and 3) be “saucy” enough to compete with boxed.
Yea, I’m talkin’ Mac and Cheese ya’ll.
I have finally made a batch that they will eat.  All. Of. Them.
Do you KNOW how hard that was to do?
Here’s the problem.  I’m on a serious grocery budget while we try and beat down the debt monster.
My kids LIKE the boxed kind.  The boxed kind is CHEAP.
Read: I cannot possibly make this as cheap as I can get it in the box.
I realize the boxed stuff isn’t as healthy.  They like it, and I can easily sneak in pureed cauliflower.
Macaroni is one of only four things my 2yo will eat.  So I make it often and I can’t afford cans and cans of evaporated milk and blocks of cheese.
Anyone have a great, CHEAP, recipe?   This is one of the few things I’ve found that I can’t make from scratch cheaper than I can buy it in the box.

5 thoughts on “I don't want to give up "from scratch"

  1. Cindy says:

    I feel for ya. We’re still on the boxed stuff. It’s the last vestige of my processed food upbringing. I just can’t quit it. The other stuff costs way too much!

  2. Sonita says:

    I make homemade-the kids will eat boxed, but me and hubby don’t care for it and the kids do prefer my homemade.
    I buy elbows in bulk! LOL I use a can of condensed milk, a can of water, and some off brand velveta, a ‘shot’ of mustard, salt, pepper, butter, flour or cornstarch then some shredded cheese for topping.
    If you buy the elbows at sams.
    A big box of off brand velveta will make 3 batches (if I don’t use it for anything else) and runs me about $4.50/box. so that’s $1.50 plus about $1 worth of shredded cheese, another almost $1 for the can of milk. Then $.50 for elbows….so $4 which is way more than boxed, but it’s one thing I’m just not ready to give up! LOL

  3. TaderDoodles says:

    Thats just the point, I LOVE my homemade mac but it’s SOOO expensive. I make it at least twice a week and it’s killing my budget. I don’t even use Velveeta just block cheese. I do get the elbows in a jumbo box 🙂
    Maybe I just need a way to make my own cheese and milk.

  4. Sonita says:

    Make it less often? LOL
    I’d love to make it every night for dinner (seriously!) but the budget won’t allow it-we have it about every other week though.

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