Ya’ll have probably been trained to say that your mama’s macaroni and cheese is the best in the world. But, you might just have to rethink that after trying these six dishes. One of these may become your new favorite because these just ain’t your mama’s mac and cheeses. (shh, we won’t tell!)

  1. Cochon Butcher (Nashville, Tennessee & New Orleans, Louisiana)

Cochon Butcher’s James Beard Award-winning chef Donald Link knows how to take mac and cheese to a whole new level. He uses elbow macaroni and a variety of ooey gooey cheeses. And of course, because Cochon Butcher is known for its house-cured meats, Link adds in some crispy pancetta to the dish, and tops it with Parmesan and breadcrumbs. Sorry if we just made you drool a little, but this mac and cheese is off the charts.

cochon butcher pic by @foodstasapm on insta

Photo by @foodstasapm


  1. Poole’s Diner (Raleigh, North Carolina)

Chef Ashley Christensen says it right when describing her macaroni and cheese at Poole’s Diner. It is most definitely “face-meltingly decadent.” While Christensen doesn’t mess around with any funky ingredients like bacon or lobster, she masters the most classic version of the dish. The three cheeses- Jarlsberg, Gran Padano, and white cheddar- combine to create a dreamy creamy bite, and are caramelized perfectly to create a crispy topping.

Poole's Diner from their Insta

Photo by Poole’s Diner


  1. Moonshine Grill (Austin, Texas)

Moonshine Grill doesn’t only kill the mac and cheese game with one dish, but they are serving up two unreal twists on the classic. If you end up opting for a different main dish, then the Baked Macaroni side is a must. Smothered with pimento cheese and bacon, you’ll probably want to order a second. But, if you’re like us and choose to have mac and cheese as your main meal, then the Green Chile Macaroni will blow your mind. Grilled chicken, corn bisque, bacon gratin, and CHEEEEESE. What more is needed?

Moonshine Grill- Thrillest Pic

Photo by Thrillist


  1. The Forge (Miami, Florida)

Black Truffle Mac and Cheese Pot Pie….holy food coma. Does your mama use three kinds of cheeses, black truffles, truffle oil, truffle vinegar, and truffle jus in her mac and cheese? Probably not. But don’t worry because the chef at The Forge in Miami has you covered. This mac and cheese will truly rock your world.

The Forge- Thrillest Pic

Photo by Thrillist


  1. Steiner Ranch (Austin, Texas)

 We are in love with the mac and cheese at Steiner Ranch. I mean really, what’s not to love? The dish is loaded with chunks of fresh lobster and delicious cheeses. It’s rich; it’s decadent; it’s heavenly. Let’s just take a moment of silence in honor of this Lobsta Mac.

steiner ranch- Pic by pinterest user Way Out

Photo by “Way Out” on Pinterest


  1. American Social (Miami, Florida)

American Social makes their famous mac and cheese with White Vermont Cheddar, Gruyere, and orecchiette pasta. Sounds amazing, right? Now don’t get us wrong, that dish alone is certainly good enough to make it on our favorites list. But, at American Social, you can get the mac and cheese with short ribs inside. Is your mind blown? We thought so.

American Social- Thrillest Pic

Photo by Thrillist


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