Recreate a state fair favorite at home, with ingredients you already have in your pantry like boxed mac and cheese and Italian-style breadcrumbs. Fried Mac and Cheese Balls will be a hit with both the kids and grownups at your table.
For a flavor boost, stir ½ cup fire-roasted tomatoes into the mac and cheese mixture after refrigerating.
- 1 7-ounce box mac and cheese, such as Betty Crocker™ original
- 1 Cup finely shredded Cheddar cheese (about 4 ounces)
- 1 ½ Cup Italian-style breadcrumbs, such as Progresso™
- Oil, for frying
- Ranch dressing, for serving
- Barbecue sauce, for serving
Make the mac and cheese as directed on the box, adding margarine and milk as called for. Stir in the shredded cheese and ½ cup of the breadcrumbs. Cover and refrigerate until firm, about 20 minutes.
Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using a ¼-cup measuring cup, scoop the cooled mac and cheese mixture into balls. Roll the mac and cheese balls in the remaining breadcrumbs. Place on a cookie sheet. Freeze for 30 minutes.
In deep-fryer or heavy saucepan, heat 3 inches of oil to 375 degrees F. Fry the balls in the hot oil in small batches until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Serve hot with ranch dressing or barbecue sauce, if desired.