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8 Places to Get Outstanding Mac & Cheese in WNY

City Guide, Food & Drink, Food & Drink Guides

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Written by Naomi Sakovics

Published on October 14, 2021
Fat Bob's
Photo courtesy of Fat Bob’s

Cheesy, creamy, carby…It’s macaroni and cheese, and I’m pretty sure it’s humankind’s best creation. We cannot say with certainty who first put pasta with butter and cheese, but it was a power move. It was also genius. Plunging a fork into a vat of creamy pasta, and seeing that cheese-pull upward, and then tasting an overwhelming cheesiness, is an experience that satisfies like little else. It’s pure hedonistic decadence, and we’re 100 percent here to bust our diets for it.

Thankfully, chefs throughout Buffalo have been perfecting mac and cheese, churning out their own creations for us to enjoy. Some say it’s a winter comfort food, but we like to think of it as an all-the-time food, perfect for barbecues in the summer, and really anytime the craving hits. It’s simple enough to make at home, but having it at a restaurant just makes it extra-delicious and extra-special. We’ve compiled a list of places you need to go STAT to get some. (Pro tip: wear stretchy pants.)

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Photo courtesy of Mooney’s

1. Mooney’s Sports Bar & Grill

WNY locations in Depew, Kenmore, Lancaster, Tonawanda, West Seneca

mooneys.com  

Mooney’s is the mac and cheese gold standard in Buffalo. Ask around where to get the best mac and cheese, and most will say, “Mooney’s.” In fact, their slogan is, “Home of the Mac n’ Cheese.” With five locations in Western New York, there is no reason that you cannot find some of their stupendous mac and cheese in all corners of the region. They get creative with their varieties, offering up versions highlighting the best of Buffalo foods. Their mac and cheese iterations include beef on weck, stuffed banana peppers, pizza, stinger, broccoli and cheese, taco, lobster and bacon cheeseburger. Most are topped with panko bread crumbs, and all are baked.

Ballyhoo
Photo courtesy of Ballyhoo

2. Ballyhoo

21 South Park Ave., Buffalo

716-240-9901 / buffaloballyhoo.com

Ballyhoo doesn’t shout about its mac and cheese the way Mooney’s does, but some argue it’s the best in Buffalo. It’s sold as a side, and it’s outrageously delicious. (The same mac and cheese, FYI, is also served at Lucky Day Whiskey Bar.)

fat bobs smokehouse
Blackened Salmon Filet & Mac and Cheese at Fat Bob’s / Step Out Buffalo

3. Fat Bob’s Smokehouse

Locations in Buffalo and East Aurora

716-887-2971 / fatbobs.com

Some pledge their macaroni and cheese fealty to Fat Bob’s Smokehouse and say it’s the absolute best. Whether you agree or not, you cannot go wrong eating at this amazing barbecue joint. You be the judge. Full entree mac and cheese is always a good option, but if you’re looking for something more snazzed up, they also offer unique variations like Memphis Mac, Texas Mac, Buffalo Chicken Mac, Atalanta Mac topped with pulled chicken, homemade hot sauce and jalapeño and Cajun Mac topped with sautéed cajun corn, jalapeño, onion and bell pepper. Plus you can add a gluten free pasta option.

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4. The Place

229 Lexington Ave., Buffalo

716-882-7522 / theplacebuffalo.com

The macaroni and cheese here is listed under “Appetizers,” but don’t be fooled, these dishes are basically entrees in their own right. They offer traditional; pork belly, lobster, truffle mushroom, and buffalo chicken finger. Of the five, we recommend the mushroom and truffle because life is short. The flavor is unreal, and one not often seen on mac and cheese offerings.

Griffon Gastropub
Photo courtesy of Griffon Gastropub

5. Griffon Gastropub

Locations in Niagara Falls, Clarence, East Aurora, Lewiston

thegriffonpub.com

The Griffin Gastropub’s smoked gouda macaroni and cheese ($16) deserves an indisputable spot on this must-try macaroni and cheese list. In fact, if you live in Buffalo and haven’t had this dish, you’re doing Buffalo wrong. These al dente shell pasta are tossed with the restaurant’s signature gouda cheese sauce and topped with crushed Ritz crackers for extra buttery goodness. According to their menu, “You’ll never want boring mac n’ cheese again!”

6. Shango Bistro and Wine Bar

3260 Main St., Buffalo

716-837-2326 / shangobistro.net

This eatery serving New Orleans style food dishes a three cheese mac — smoked gouda, goat cheese and cheddar — cradled in a bubbling cast iron cauldron of goodness. The cheesy penne pasta is topped with a rosemary panko crust and baked, and it’s basically the next best thing to hopping on a plane to The Big Easy. You can add Andouille sausage for an up-charge, a move we highly recommend.

This Little Pig
Photo courtesy of This Little Pig

7. This Little Pig

4401 Transit Road, Williamsville

716-580-7872 / thislittlepigeats.com

Look under This Little Pig’s “Noodles” section, and you’ll find a couple mac and cheese dishes star deserving a spot on this list. Their Porky Mac and Cheese features corkscrew pasta with a punchy mix of pimento cheese, cheddar, velveeta, and Parmesan. The Kansas City Mac includes barbecued brisket ‘burnt ends’ simmered with pimento cheese and their sweet bippy sauce topped with goat cheese & pickled onions.

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8. The Delaware

3410 Delaware Ave., Buffalo

716-874-0100 / delawarepubandgrill.com

This classic American comfort food spot knows how to do mac and cheese, and they do it dang well. They offer smoked gouda mac and cheese, a spiral pasta baked with diced tomatoes, gouda cream sauce and a breadcrumb topping. They also offer add ons to the mac like andouille sausage, chicken, and bacon.

This post was originally published in 2018 and has been updated.

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Written by <a href="https://stepoutbuffalo.com/author/naomisakovics/" target="_self">Naomi Sakovics</a>

Written by Naomi Sakovics

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