This post may contain affiliate links. For more information, please read my disclosure policy.
When you have a best friend who’s feeling under the weather and her favorite food is seafood… what do you make her? You make her this cheesy and comforting Seafood Mac and Cheese!
Sign up for my free email subscription and never miss a recipe.
Yesssss! I thought long and hard on what I could make that would be extra extra special for my dear friend Rhonda. I couldn’t think of anything more comforting than mac and cheese surrounded by a bunch of local shrimp and crab meat… SCORE!
And that crunchy, buttery panko bread crumb topping… so sinfully delicious!
Rhonda is such a sweet and selfless person, when I told her I was making this she replied, “Please don’t go out of your way.” I replied, “Ummmm RHONDA I have a freakin’ food blog and my job is cooking which I LOVE!” 🙂
We met when I started working at a local surgical center in 2012 and we immediately became friends on my first day of work.
Last weekend was my birthday and Brian and I had a party celebrating moving into the new house. The best present ever was her presence and being able to spend time with my friend. We were even gifted with a beautiful rainbow right after she got here!
You just can’t go wrong with tender macaroni in a 3-cheese sauce surrounded by shrimp and crab meat! You can also use cooked lobster and/or cooked chopped scallops… or your favorite seafood. LOVE. Enjoy!Print
The ultimate seafood comfort food… perfectly seasoned cheesy macaroni full of shrimp and crab meat!
- 1 (16-ounce) package elbow macaroni, cooked 2 minutes less than al dente, drained and rinsed with cold water
- 7 tablespoons butter, divided
- 3/4 pound medium shrimp peeled, deveined and chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 cup Italian seasoned panko bread crumbs
- 1 cup diced yellow onion
- 1 heaping teaspoon freshly minced garlic
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 cups whole milk
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
- 1–1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (more or less, to taste)
- 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (more or less, to taste)
- 1–1/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1–1/3 cup shredded Swiss cheese
- 1–1/3 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1/2 pound cooked lump crab meat
- Optional fresh chopped parsley, for garnish
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees .
- Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add shrimp and cook, stirring constantly, just until pink (about 3 minutes). Remove from heat and set aside.
- In a large saucepan, melt the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter. Transfer 2 tablespoons of the melted butter to a medium bowl and toss with the panko bread crumbs.
- Add diced onions and garlic to melted butter in saucepan and cook until softened, about 3-4 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Add flour and cook for an additional minute, stirring constantly.
- Add milk and whisk until smooth and there are no lumps.
- Bring to a gentle boil, reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook until thickened, whisking constantly.
- Season with salt, pepper, nutmeg and Old Bay Seasoning.
- Remove saucepan from burner. Add cheeses and stir until smooth. Fold in macaroni, shrimp and crab meat.
- Transfer to an 11 x 7 casserole dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
- Top evenly with buttery panko bread crumb mixture.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until bread crumb topping is golden brown and sauce is bubbling around edges.
- Sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley, for garnish if desired.
Adapted from MarthaStewart.com