If you are looking for comfort foods, it doesn't get any better than these homemade gluten free fried mac and cheese bites! Crispy on the outside, creamy and cheesy on the inside!
Your whole family is going to love this gluten free dinner recipe. If you are short on time and can't fry these, you can make the mac and cheese and sprinkle the special topping over the top and bake!
(*This post is sponsored by Milton Craft Bakers. They make some of the best gluten free crackers!)
Today is all about comfort food. I start with my family's favorite gluten free mac n cheese and then make it more fun by frying it up into crunchy bite-sized balls. This not only adds flavor, but it makes these cheese bites so much fun to eat!
Instead of breading, I have been having fun using crushed Milton's crackers. It adds so much more flavor to recipes than breadcrumbs! Try using any of Milton's Gluten Free Crackers to coat these gluten free fried mozzarella sticks!
And if you REALLY love cheese, you must try their delicious cauliflower pizzas because those are also certified gluten free!! I have found these pizzas at my local Costco, but many local grocery stores also carry them.
Milton's Gluten Free Crackers come in lots of delicious flavors including Sea Salt, Olive Oil and Sea Salt, Fire Roasted Vegetables, Everything (one of my personal favorites!), Multigrain, and Cheddar Cheese.
All of these flavors would taste delicious as a coating to these gluten free macaroni and cheese bites!
My kids took a vote and we decided to use Sea Salt for our crispy coating, but feel free to use your favorite!
Not only are they all certified gluten free but each variety is Non-GMO Project Verified, and does not contain wheat, nuts, or conventional fillers.
If you are looking for more kid-friendly recipes, give these Gluten Free Pigs In A Blanket a try too!
Can you use boxed gluten free mac and cheese?
If you are short on time, or prefer to use a boxed gluten free mac & cheese that you already have on-hand in your panty, that is completely fine. Just make sure to follow the directions on the box to make the mac and cheese. Then follow the rest of my recipe instructions.
For making this recipe, we used gluten free brown rice elbows (aka brown rice macaroni).
If you prefer regular macaroni and cheese, you will love this gluten free mac n cheese!
Are you ready to give this delicious kid-friendly gluten free macaroni and cheese bites recipe a try? I promise it is easy.
Recipe step by step directions:
Step 1: Cook your gluten free elbows according to the package directions. Cook the pasta then give it a cold water rinse to halt the cooking to prevent your pasta from turning to mush.
You can use any brand you like, but please make sure to cook your gluten-free elbow macaroni according to package directions since it varies greatly by ingredient.
Step 2: Add your gluten free cheese sauce ingredients to a pot. I highly recommend using a non-stick pot for easy clean up later! I use cream cheese, cheddar cheese, unsalted butter, heavy cream, and seasonings.
Your melted cheese sauce is going to be thick and creamy. This will help the macaroni stick together better when forming your bites.
Step 3: Pour your hot cheese sauce into the drained macaroni and mix well. Refrigerate the mac and cheese for 30 minutes to cool.
You don't want it to completely harden, just firm up enough to shape into bites.
Step 4: Take out your mac and cheese from the refrigerator and use a spoon or cookie scoop to make balls. Use your hands to squeeze each mix tightly into balls.
If they are warm after this, refrigerate again so they hold together for the dipping.
Step 5: Choose a flavor of Milton's Gluten Free Crackers to use and crush your crackers by placing them into a large plastic bag. Squeeze out the air and zip to close.
Use a rolling pin to crush the crackers into small bits. You can also use a food processor if that is easier.
Step 6: Put the crushed crackers into a bowl. Put the scrambled egg into a separate bowl. Take a mac and cheese ball and dip into the egg mixture. Roll around to coat the edges.
Next, dip it into the crackers and roll around. You want the whole ball to be coated in crackers.
Step 7: Heat oil in a cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven. I like to fry foods on the side burner on our grill so the oil stays outside.
Heat the oil to 375º F. Test your oil by dropping a few crumbs into the oil. If they start to sizzle, your oil is ready.
Step 8: Drop a few mac and cheese balls into the hot oil. Use a slotted metal spoon to roll them around so all sides cook evenly. It takes 3-4 minutes to fully cook. When cooked, remove to a paper towel-lined plate.
Enjoy hot so the cheese is gooey and delicious. You can dip these crispy macaroni and cheese balls or drizzle some sriracha on them.
Expert Tips and Recipe FAQ:
There are many brands of gluten free macaroni available in grocery stores. These are made with rice, corn, legumes, quinoa, or a combination of gluten free ingredients.
When frying foods, it is critical to use an oil that can be used at high heat. Usually canola, avocado, and coconut oils are really good for high heat. Do NOT use olive oil as it can't handle high heat and gets rancid.
These mac and cheese bites will keep up to 4 days in an air-tight container, or up to 4 months in the freezer.
The best way to reheat these mac and cheese bites is to place them on a baking tray and bake at 350º F for 10-15 minutes.
More Recipes That Use Gluten Free Macaroni:
Gluten Free Mac and Cheese Bites
- 12 ounce package gluten free pasta
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- 8 ounces cheddar cheese
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
- 4.5 ounce package Milton's Gluten Free Crackers
- 2 eggs
- oil for frying
- Cook your gluten free macaroni to package instructions. Every brand varies widely so it is best to follow the package directions.
- In a pot, add the cheeses, heavy cream, and spices. Cook on medium low heat until all of the cheeses are melted. Stir frequently.
- Add the cooked drained pasta to the cheese sauce and mix well.
- Refrigerate the mac and cheese mixture for 30 minutes to cool.
- Put the Milton's Gluten Free Crackers into a ziplock plastic bag and seal. Use a rolling pin to crush the crackers into crumbs.
- Pour the crackers into a bowl.
- In another bowl, add the two eggs and mix well.
- Line a plate with wax paper and use a spoon to scoop mac and cheese out of the pot.
- Use your hands to gently squeeze/press the mac and cheese mix together and line them up on the wax paper.
- If the balls are warm, put back into the refrigerator for 15 minutes.
- Remove the bites from the refrigerator.
- Start heating the oil in a cast-iron pan.
- Roll in the egg mixture, then into the cracker mixture.
- When the oil is ready for frying, test by dropping a few crumbs into the oil. If it sizzles, it is ready.
- Drop a few bites into the hot oil. Leave room around each one.
- Use a metal slotted spoon to gently turn the balls around so they cook evenly.
- Remove when they are crisp on each side to a paper towel lined plate. Repeat until all bites are cooked.
- Serve hot.
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