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14 Diet-Breaking Mac and Cheeses to Try Right Now in Los Angeles

Because cheese.

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With the pumpkin-spiced everything sipping masses out in full force, LA locals are doing whatever they can to have a semblance of what has seemingly become everyone's favorite season. And while poor Angelenos are stuck with the warmth of this Indian summer, there is no reason not to indulge in hearty fall dishes. Mac and cheese has taken the city by storm, with surprising iterations of the cheesy dish in every locale. From classic preparations to versions made with gumbo cheddar beer whiz, here is a list of some of the best in the city, in no particular order.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Holy Cow BBQ

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264 26th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90402

This family-friendly restaurant offers barbecue that draws from styles across America. Of course, nothing pairs better with down home barbecue than a simple preparation of mac and cheese made with Vermont white and yellow cheddar, parmesan, gruyere, and béchamel for a side that is rich, nutty, and oh so good.

2. Manhattan Beach Post

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1142 Manhattan Ave
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
(310) 545-5405
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Chef David LeFevre takes an especially smooth and creamy mac and cheese of fontina, parmesan, and mycella blue and focuses on textural integrity with a generous layer of house-made garlic and herb panko topping. The herbaceous breadcrumbs permeate the cheesy interior, allowing for perfectly creamy and crunchy elements in every bite.

3. mac-o-licious

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5217 Laurel Canyon Blvd
Valley Village, CA 91607
(818) 614-6220
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This newly opened food truck turned brick and mortar in Valley Village specializes in the cheesy dish, and deservedly treats it as the pièce de résistance as opposed to a simple side. And while there are the classic options, the Frous Frous Mac is for those who want to opt for something a little more luxurious, packed with blue swimming crab claw meat.

4. Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery

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1517 Lincoln Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 395-8279
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With eight different cheeses, chunks of leftover bread, and hearty pasta, Bay Cities’ macaroni and cheese casserole stays far away from minimalist iterations of the dish. Even though it is one of the heaviest examples of mac and cheese in town, lunchtime crowds go crazy for it, so be sure to snag some if you can.

5. Horse Thief

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324 S Hill St
Los Angeles, CA 90013
(213) 625-0341
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A trip to Grand Central Market just wouldn’t be complete without a stop at Horse Thief BBQ. This hearty side uses a larger pasta and aged white cheddar that holds up well to the brisket and pulled pork. Be sure to get some of the crisp cheese topping for textural contrast.

6. CUT by Wolfgang Puck

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9500 Wilshire Blvd
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
(310) 276-8500
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CUT’s cavatappi pasta with Quebec cheddar capitalizes on the large, spiral noodles to absorb the decadent cheese sauce of fontina, mozzarella, crème fraiche, and seven-year aged Quebec cheddar. The bubbling mixture is topped with a crust of brioche bread crumbs and parmesan cheese for the ultimate cheesy, stringy dish.

7. Beer Belly

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532 S Western Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90020
(213) 387-2337
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Beer Belly’s That Mac Cray! is an ode to all things Cajun. With gumbo cheddar beer whiz, swiss, crawfish tails, celery, and bay bread crumbs, the mac and cheese at this Koreatown beer bar truly kicks it up a notch.

8. Pacific Dining Car-Santa Monica

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2700 Wilshire Blvd
Santa Monica, CA
(310) 453-4000
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This 24-hour LA staple servers their elbow macaroni and cheese with a chewy, cheesy crust in an elegant ramekin at both Santa Monica and Downtown locations. For all the late night denizens, it is hard to beat this ooey gooey decadence.

9. Lemonade Beverly

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9001 Beverly Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90048
(310) 247-2500
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Lemonade’s White Truffle Mac ‘N Cheese has developed a sort of cult-like following, with guests going crazy for their creamy side laced with white truffle oil. A perfect accompaniment to nearly every dish on the menu, you can’t go wrong with this extraordinarily popular offering.

10. Barton G

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861 N La Cienega Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90069
(310) 388-1888
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Barton G has perhaps the most opulent preparation of mac and cheese, made with a pound of Maine lobster, three cheese lobster sauce, and truffle oil. However, for those who prefer simpler preparations, the Mouse Trap Mac N Cheese is made with a classic cheddar sauce, and is served in a giant mouse trap for the restaurant’s signature whimsical twist.

11. Bludso's Bar & Que

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609 N La Brea Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 931-2583
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Bludso’s preparation of the creamy comfort dish is as traditional as it gets, and is a fantastic addition to any meal at one of LA’s most iconic barbecue joints. The thick cheese sauce boasts a slight spicy kick, and will have you leaving full and satisfied.

12. Lazy Dog Cafe

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3525 W. Carson St. #162
Torrance, CA 90503
(310) 921-6080
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It is worth a trip to this South Bay favorite for their hatch chili and bacon mac ‘n cheese. Don’t be surprised by its emerald green crust, thanks to a green onion crumble that lends a crunchy bite to the cheesy interior. With bacon, chili, and cheese, you just can’t go wrong.

13. Sixth Street Tavern

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630 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 614-1900
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Chef Tom Block spices up the traditional mac and cheese with his spicy ‘njuda variation. Ditalini pasta is mixed with the spicy pork sausage, fontina, manchego, and parmesan for a mac and cheese that is spicy, nutty, and creamy all at the same time.

14. Nook

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11628 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025
(310) 207-5160
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This creamy, rosemary-intensive mac and cheese is lighter than other versions, and is a favorite of those who prefer the dish to not be overwhelmingly cheesy. The herbed bread crumb topping adds a flavorful crunch that offsets the creamy center.

1. Holy Cow BBQ

264 26th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90402

This family-friendly restaurant offers barbecue that draws from styles across America. Of course, nothing pairs better with down home barbecue than a simple preparation of mac and cheese made with Vermont white and yellow cheddar, parmesan, gruyere, and béchamel for a side that is rich, nutty, and oh so good.

264 26th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90402

2. Manhattan Beach Post

1142 Manhattan Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

Chef David LeFevre takes an especially smooth and creamy mac and cheese of fontina, parmesan, and mycella blue and focuses on textural integrity with a generous layer of house-made garlic and herb panko topping. The herbaceous breadcrumbs permeate the cheesy interior, allowing for perfectly creamy and crunchy elements in every bite.

1142 Manhattan Ave
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

3. mac-o-licious

5217 Laurel Canyon Blvd, Valley Village, CA 91607

This newly opened food truck turned brick and mortar in Valley Village specializes in the cheesy dish, and deservedly treats it as the pièce de résistance as opposed to a simple side. And while there are the classic options, the Frous Frous Mac is for those who want to opt for something a little more luxurious, packed with blue swimming crab claw meat.

5217 Laurel Canyon Blvd
Valley Village, CA 91607

4. Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery

1517 Lincoln Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401

With eight different cheeses, chunks of leftover bread, and hearty pasta, Bay Cities’ macaroni and cheese casserole stays far away from minimalist iterations of the dish. Even though it is one of the heaviest examples of mac and cheese in town, lunchtime crowds go crazy for it, so be sure to snag some if you can.

1517 Lincoln Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90401

5. Horse Thief

324 S Hill St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

A trip to Grand Central Market just wouldn’t be complete without a stop at Horse Thief BBQ. This hearty side uses a larger pasta and aged white cheddar that holds up well to the brisket and pulled pork. Be sure to get some of the crisp cheese topping for textural contrast.

324 S Hill St
Los Angeles, CA 90013

6. CUT by Wolfgang Puck

9500 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90212

CUT’s cavatappi pasta with Quebec cheddar capitalizes on the large, spiral noodles to absorb the decadent cheese sauce of fontina, mozzarella, crème fraiche, and seven-year aged Quebec cheddar. The bubbling mixture is topped with a crust of brioche bread crumbs and parmesan cheese for the ultimate cheesy, stringy dish.

9500 Wilshire Blvd
Beverly Hills, CA 90212

7. Beer Belly

532 S Western Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90020

Beer Belly’s That Mac Cray! is an ode to all things Cajun. With gumbo cheddar beer whiz, swiss, crawfish tails, celery, and bay bread crumbs, the mac and cheese at this Koreatown beer bar truly kicks it up a notch.

532 S Western Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90020

8. Pacific Dining Car-Santa Monica

2700 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA

This 24-hour LA staple servers their elbow macaroni and cheese with a chewy, cheesy crust in an elegant ramekin at both Santa Monica and Downtown locations. For all the late night denizens, it is hard to beat this ooey gooey decadence.

2700 Wilshire Blvd
Santa Monica, CA

9. Lemonade Beverly

9001 Beverly Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90048

Lemonade’s White Truffle Mac ‘N Cheese has developed a sort of cult-like following, with guests going crazy for their creamy side laced with white truffle oil. A perfect accompaniment to nearly every dish on the menu, you can’t go wrong with this extraordinarily popular offering.

9001 Beverly Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90048

10. Barton G

861 N La Cienega Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90069

Barton G has perhaps the most opulent preparation of mac and cheese, made with a pound of Maine lobster, three cheese lobster sauce, and truffle oil. However, for those who prefer simpler preparations, the Mouse Trap Mac N Cheese is made with a classic cheddar sauce, and is served in a giant mouse trap for the restaurant’s signature whimsical twist.

861 N La Cienega Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90069

11. Bludso's Bar & Que

609 N La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Bludso’s preparation of the creamy comfort dish is as traditional as it gets, and is a fantastic addition to any meal at one of LA’s most iconic barbecue joints. The thick cheese sauce boasts a slight spicy kick, and will have you leaving full and satisfied.

609 N La Brea Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036

12. Lazy Dog Cafe

3525 W. Carson St. #162, Torrance, CA 90503

It is worth a trip to this South Bay favorite for their hatch chili and bacon mac ‘n cheese. Don’t be surprised by its emerald green crust, thanks to a green onion crumble that lends a crunchy bite to the cheesy interior. With bacon, chili, and cheese, you just can’t go wrong.

3525 W. Carson St. #162
Torrance, CA 90503

13. Sixth Street Tavern

630 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90017

Chef Tom Block spices up the traditional mac and cheese with his spicy ‘njuda variation. Ditalini pasta is mixed with the spicy pork sausage, fontina, manchego, and parmesan for a mac and cheese that is spicy, nutty, and creamy all at the same time.

630 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90017

14. Nook

11628 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025

This creamy, rosemary-intensive mac and cheese is lighter than other versions, and is a favorite of those who prefer the dish to not be overwhelmingly cheesy. The herbed bread crumb topping adds a flavorful crunch that offsets the creamy center.

11628 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025

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