We’re not here to knock Kraft (or Annie’s for the fancy folk out there), but if you have a hankering for macaroni and cheese why not think outside the box?

It may not be as simple as just adding water, but going the made-from-scratch route is definitely worth the extra effort.

Take the dynamic duo of pasta and queso to delicious new heights with our favorite riffs on the legendary weeknight fave.

The key here is a creamy béchamel which sounds chi chi but is simply a combination of milk, butter, flour, and salt. Combined with elbows and a one-two punch of cheddar (preferably aged a couple of years) and pecorino, plus a sprinkle of crunchy panko for good measure, it’s the pinnacle of cheesy, noodly excellence. Get our Classic Macaroni and Cheese recipe.

No one likes a show off…unless you’re flaunting this crazy delicious mac and cheese soufflé. Think of it as the food equivalent of when Adam Sandler takes on a serious role. Get our Macaroni and Cheese Soufflé recipe.

James Park takes inspiration from kimchi jjigae (a spicy and tangy Korean stew) for this brilliant fusion of flavors. Of course, there’s pasta (preferably farfalle) and a creamy cheese sauce, but the key weapon here is deploying a funky, spicy paste made with chopped anchovy fillets, bacon, kimchi, gochugaru, and gochujang. Get the Spicy Kimchi Mac and Cheese recipe.

Mac and cheese is certainly a classic but “Top Chef” alum Sam Talbot adds an extra layer of nostalgia with the addition of cherry peppers. The southern spin adds notes of sweetness and spice to this insanely decadent dish which is also prepared with cream cheese and mayo. Get the Pimento Mac and Cheese recipe.

Elevate your mac and cheese by pairing it with sweet, succulent lobster meat. Take a bite, close your eyes, and you may hear seagulls and the rolling tide off at the distance. Get our Lobster Mac and Cheese recipe.