What makes a drool-worthy mac and cheese? Fresh pasta cooked al dente, a creamy and cheesy sauce and a crispy crust baked until golden brown. Not to mention gourmet (and sometimes out there) add-ons, which can *really* take your bowl of mac to the next level. Between vegan versions of this classic dish and bowls sprinkled with our fave chips (we’re looking at you, Doritos), mac and cheese is not the same as it used to be (read: from a box). With all of the endless creations, it can be a struggle to find which joints are serving up these upscale versions of our fave pasta dish. That’s why we did some indulging to find the best mac and cheese in Edmonton. If you want to taste test all of our favourites across the country, click here.
Blue Plate Diner
Find it: 10145 104 St. NW, blueplatediner.ca
The low-down: Paintings by local artists line the walls of this colourful, old-school diner but it’s the classic all-day eats that really make this place a hometown favourite.
Cost: $13 to $19
Varieties: Their house mac and cheese is loaded with rich béchamel sauce, aged cheddar and mozza, topped with fresh tomatoes. For you meat lovers out there, add some diced chicken or sausage to really take it to the next level.
Find it: 8440 109 St., noorish.ca
The low-down: This yoga-studio-meets-vegetarian-eatery dedicates itself to promoting a conscious and balanced lifestyle starting with nourishing, good-for-you food.
Cost: $16 (lunch) or $18 (dinner)
Varieties: One fully vegan Truffle Mac n’ Cheese with brown rice pasta, a lobster mushroom “cheese” sauce, finished with truffle oil and coconut “bacon”—perf to treat yourself to after a sweaty yoga sesh.
The Next Act
Find it: 8224 104 St. NW nextactpub.com
The low-down: This 25-year-old establishment in Old Strathcona is a go-to after-hours spot for a casual dinner and drinks—wash down your mac and cheese with a brew from the pub’s extensive bevvie menu.
Cost: $14 or $16
Varieties: Two different versions depending on your mood: a classic dish or the baked mac and cheese with bacon and jalapeños for a burst of smoky and spicy flavour.
Find it: 10704 124 St. NW, northernchickenyeg.com
The low-down: Head chefs (and BFFs) Matt Phillips and Andrew Cowan took their passion for music, food and booze and turned it into an inviting spot that brings modern Southern soul food to Edmonton.
Cost: $6 (small) to $10 (large)
Varieties: One only, but it’s a memorable one: the quirky Dorito Mac and Cheese is a creamy bowl of mac sprinkled with crushed Dorito crumbs—a pairing we never knew we needed.