Mac and cheese has always been my most favorite comfort food. I have tried various ways to make it over the years and thought when switching to GF pasta it wouldn't be that much different, but I found out otherwise.
I mainly use Tinkyada Rice pasta. I cook it the energy saving way ( boil for two minutes then shut off heat and cover for 20). But when made the way I used to make my mac and cheese I found that it was coming out a soggy mess. The cheese absorbed into the pasta and was just gooey but not creamy, like the sauce in between the pasta pieces. I didn't care for that at all. So I set about trying to remedy and am happy to share that I think I have. I have tried this method both alone and with 'fillings' and it worked well in both cases.
When you have a hankering for homemade Mac and Cheese (and another serving of Amy's won't do) just start this early in the morning or the day before and you won't go wrong.
Using any Mac and Cheese recipe, prepare it in this way.
Make your cheese sauce first in a large pot, make a half recipe more than you would for regular mac and cheese and don't add any starch such as rice flour, keep it rather thin. When done, remove pot to refrigerator. Then cook pasta according to the package directions. If using Tinkyada you can use the method of boiling for two minutes then let sit for about 14 minutes. Then taste a piece after running under cool water. You want it to still have a slight bite to it, but cooked. Don't let it get mushy. Then dump immediately into a colander and rinse with cold water, carefully shaking, be careful not to shred it up while doing this! Let sit in the sink, for at least a 1/2 hour to cool and to dry out a bit, you can gently 'fold' in colander to turn up what is on bottom.
Once pasta is cool and dried out on top take cheese sauce from fridge and add pasta to it. Carefully folding it in until all pieces are coated. Now you can pour this into your chosen baking casserole, top with GF bread crumbs or extra shredded cheese or both, and return to the fridge. Bake when ready, removing from fridge about 20 minutes before baking and not preheating. Bake until bubbly. You can also make a variation like I did in the picture below, pour half of Pasta and cheese mixture into baking dish, then top with shredded blanched carrots and fresh spinach chopped in processor, then top with remaining mixture and toppings, bake the same.
It seems that when the pasta is warm it keeps absorbing more moisture, that is probably why they say you can't over cook Tinkyada, but the problem arises with the addition of the sauce as it absorbs that too. So keep that in mind when making tomato sauce dishes. See below for tips.
This was baked in a large glass pie plate and then cut into wedges.
Here's a close up so you can see the creamyness that it still has after baking.
Reheat leftovers like shown above, cutting into this size and heating uncovered in a toaster oven for about 15 minutes on 300-325. Served with fresh sliced tomatoes and you've got a great meal!