Lobster mac and cheese for two is the perfect romantic dinner for two! Easier to make than you think, and so decadent, too!
In my nearly 9 years of blogging, I've never allowed a guest post on this site. If you're unfamiliar, a guest post is when a new writer or recipe developer shares a recipe on a blog other than their own. It's a great way to keep the free recipes flowing when you're on maternity leave or a vacation, for example. But for me, I've always opted to just take a break. I never trusted anyone to develop small batch recipes for you.
I have a long recipe testing process when scaling down recipes. Usually, I start with a full-size recipe, and then I cut it in half. The full-size recipe stays on the counter for side-by-side taste comparisons. From the halved recipe, I usually halve it again. This is where the problems usually arise--eggs cannot be halved and cups get split into tablespoons. This is the point that most recipes fail.
Over the years, I've learned that a flat cookie needs more flour and possibly just the egg yolk instead of the egg white. I've learned that a sunken cake is usually from not enough leaveners, rather than too many. Also, I've accepted that sometimes, just serving fewer people is the goal, like with my banana sheet cake. It definitely serves more than 2, but significantly less than the standard sheet cake that serves 10-12.
If you're interested in my smaller sheet cakes, I have a Texas chocolate sheet cake and a Pumpkin Sheet Cake, too. They're both soft, tender cakes on the thin side with warm frosting poured on top. Insanely delicious, if you ask me.
Lobster mac and cheese recipe:
But back to lobster mac and cheese, this recipe is coming to you from my Mom!
My Mom has dutifully recipe-tested for me over the years both with blog recipes and my cookbook recipes. I couldn't do this job without her. She buys every small pan that I use, and makes helpful recipe notes, too!
She scaled down this lobster mac and cheese recipe to be baked in two small baking dishes for Valentine's Day. And while I've never been one to shy away from anything lobster, I worried you guys wouldn't be interested in such a fancy dish. But my Mom assures me that a raw lobster tail is way more approachable than you think. It's also widely available in most frozen seafood sections of the grocery store (including some Walmarts!).
After tasting this lobster mac and cheese, I see the beauty of it, and it's definitely our plan for Valentine's Day at home. We still don't know if we're celebrating on the actual weekday or waiting til the weekend, but either way, this dish will be involved.
I would serve it with a juicy Grenache if you're a red wine drinker, or a Riesling that isn't too sweet. The internet tells me a Lambrusco would be great, but I haven't tried that yet!
I have a collection of romantic meals for two at home, and also a chicken dinners for two recipe collection, if you'd like to browse that, too. We are all about staying in on Valentine's Day in our house!
Macaroni and cheese for two is easy because it uses just:
-4 ounces of shell pasta
-two types of cheese (Gruyere and a sharp aged cheddar of your choice)
-1 lobster tail
-milk and butter to make an easy roux
-small dash of nutmeg for flavor
Gratin dishes to use for baked mac and cheese:
The baking dishes we use for lobster mac and cheese hold 0.6L each, and are the exact same one we use for Chocolate Cobbler. I found them randomly at the grocery store, but these gratin dishes are very similar. I've seen oval dishes that hold roughly 20 ounces of liquid at kitchen stores, too.
You don't have to use oval dishes, round ones are perfectly acceptable (and probably a little more common and easy to find).
If small baking dishes are completely eluding you, dump the entire recipe into an 8x8 dish to bake. It will be a little on the thin side, but it's okay, just keep an eye on it and bake it for less time. You might even need a few more breadcrumbs for the top.
Speaking of breadcrumbs, I know that many people think a crispy crust on a pan of mac and cheese ruins it all, so if that sounds like you, leave it off. If you leave off the breadcrumb topping, cover the pan with foil before baking, ok? I happen to love a crisp topping on creamy mac and cheese, but make it your way.
I hope you guys have a great Valentine's Day planned! Even if you're single, make this dish and enjoy one for dinner and the other one for lunch the next day. You deserve lobster mac and cheese, no matter what!
I started writing this blog when I was single, and I was single for many years after that! I love the single life, and wish I could tell everyone to enjoy it while it lasts. While I did meet and marry a wonderful dude, the years I spent cooking for myself are such great memories for me. I taught myself how to cook using small batch recipes, and now that I have a family, it's easier for me to tackle a larger recipe.
But I really love when we keep it simple and bake date night dinners and desserts for two at home, too.
If you make this for your Valentine, I would love to hear how it goes in the comment section! There's also a star rating system in the recipe card, if you'd like to rate it.
Happy Valentine's Day, everyone! Make it cheesy and delicious for me, okay?
- 4 ounces macaroni or shell pasta
- 1 lobster tail, fresh or frozen
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided use
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 cup grated Gruyere cheese
- ½ cup grated sharp Cheddar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated black pepper
- pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- ½ cup Panko bread crumbs
- Preheat the oven to 375, and spray 2 oval 0.6L baking dishes lightly with cooking spray (or use extra butter to grease them).
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and cook the pasta until almost done (about 1 minute shy of package cooking time); drain and set aside.
- Using kitchen shears, cut down either side of the lobster tail, and remove the meat. Chop it into 1" chunks.
- Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a skillet over medium high heat, and cook the lobster pieces in it while stirring occasionally for about 3-4 minutes. The lobster pieces will start to turn opaque and firm up; they will continue to cook in the oven, so remove them from the skillet and let cool.
- In a sauce pan, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium low heat, and add the flour. Whisk over low heat for 2 minutes, and then add the milk slowly. Cook this mixture until it thickens and coats the back of a spoon, about 4 minutes.
- Turn off the heat from the milk mixture, and add the grated cheeses, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Stir to melt the cheeses.
- Finally, stir in the cooked lobster and pasta, and stir to combine. Divide this mixture between the two baking dishes.
- In a small dish, melt the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter, and stir in the Panko bread crumbs to coat. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over both dishes.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until bubbly and lightly golden brown.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 780Total Fat: 48gSaturated Fat: 28gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 162mgSodium: 984mgCarbohydrates: 46gFiber: 2gSugar: 6gProtein: 40g