1 lb. elbow pasta
½ cup (4 ounces) unsalted butter
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon onion powder
Salt & pepper, to taste
5 cups milk (whole or 2%)
4 cups (16 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
For the Topping:
15 Ritz crackers, crushed
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Cook the pasta according to the package directions for al dente. Drain and set aside.
3. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour, then add the onion powder, salt and pepper. Gradually whisk in the milk. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens and the mixture begins to boil. Add the cheese and stir until the cheese is melted. Add the cooked pasta and stir to coat the pasta.
4. Pour the mixture into a 9x13-inch baking dish. Mix together the crushed Ritz crackers and the melted butter until all of the crumbs are moistened, and then sprinkle over the top of the pasta mixture.
5. Bake for 30 minutes, until golden and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes and serve.