bacOn macarOni and cheese

AuthorHeather WallaceCategoryDifficultyBeginner

I was watching Kelsey Nixon make her “Baked Tomatoes Stuffed with Creamy Stovetop Bacon Mac and Cheese” on tv and caught myself drooling and knew I had to make it.

My husband Jason however, doesn’t like tomatoes. So I adjusted the recipe a tad and put them in some soup ramekins.

Now, I’ve made mac & cheese many times and always had the issue that Kelsey mentioned in her program of having a “gritty” texture to the cheese. This recipe’s claim was to not have that grittiness due to the combination of Muenster and Cheddar cheeses. I admit I had never tried Muenster in my mac & cheese…and now I am sold!

Talk about creamy! There wasn’t any grit at all-no cheese separation. I did, however, cringe at the amount of bacon fat used…and I almost changed it to all olive oil-perhaps next time I will….who knows, maybe a little bit of sauteed onion too? Recently I have had to adjust my diet to be nitrate free for health reasons...but I can still enjoy this every so often by using uncured bacon. Uncured bacon still contains some nitrates even though the packaging says "nitrate free" but it has natural nitrates such as celery powder instead of chemicals like sodium nitrate. So fear not if you have restrictions- you can still partake in this gooey delight!

I really would like to try it in a hollowed out tomato the way Kelsey did next time for myself. I did add a cut up cherry tomato from my garden to my bowl and it was so yummy!

Yields4 Servings
Total Time1 hr 10 mins

For the Macaroni:
 1 lb elbow macaroni
 6 strips bacon, crumbled
 ¼ cup all purpose flour
 4 cups hot milk
 1 tsp dry mustard
 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
 8 oz Muenster cheese, shredded
 1 tsp sriracha
 salt and pepper to taste
For the Topping:
 ¼ cup panko
 ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
 olive oil for drizzling

Boil Pasta & Cook the Bacon . . .
1

Boil 1 lb of macaroni noodles according to box directions in salted water, drain and set aside.

Meanwhile in a large, deep skillet cook 6 strips of bacon over medium-low heat until crispy.

Drain on paper towel and crumble-set aside.

Make Cheese Sauce . . .
2

Keep 1/4 cup of bacon fat (if you don’t have enough, add olive oil). See...a lot of bacon fat! Use your judgment here…lol

Add 1/4 cup of flour and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

Whisk in 3 cups of the hot milk and cook until thick, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

3

Bring to boil, then reduce heat to low and cook 2-3 more minutes.

Stir in 1 teaspoon of dry mustard, add 8 ounces of Sharp Cheddar Cheese and 8 ounces of Muenster Cheese gradually stirring continually until cheese melts.

4

Add 1 teaspoon of sriracha and remaining cup of milk, stir till creamy.

Add Noodles & Broil . . .
5

Pour in cooked pasta and most of the crumbled bacon, reserving a few tablespoons of the bacon to put on top.

6

Spoon into oven-safe soup bowls and place on a cookie sheet.

7

Preheat broiler on high.

Combine 1/4 cup of panko, 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan Cheese and reserved bacon in a small bowl.

8

Top bowls of mac & cheese with the panko mixture and drizzle with olive oil. Add sliced cherry tomatoes if you desire.

Broil for 2 minutes or until browned.

Ingredients

For the Macaroni:
 1 lb elbow macaroni
 6 strips bacon, crumbled
 ¼ cup all purpose flour
 4 cups hot milk
 1 tsp dry mustard
 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
 8 oz Muenster cheese, shredded
 1 tsp sriracha
 salt and pepper to taste
For the Topping:
 ¼ cup panko
 ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
 olive oil for drizzling

Directions

Boil Pasta & Cook the Bacon . . .
1

Boil 1 lb of macaroni noodles according to box directions in salted water, drain and set aside.

Meanwhile in a large, deep skillet cook 6 strips of bacon over medium-low heat until crispy.

Drain on paper towel and crumble-set aside.

Make Cheese Sauce . . .
2

Keep 1/4 cup of bacon fat (if you don’t have enough, add olive oil). See...a lot of bacon fat! Use your judgment here…lol

Add 1/4 cup of flour and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

Whisk in 3 cups of the hot milk and cook until thick, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

3

Bring to boil, then reduce heat to low and cook 2-3 more minutes.

Stir in 1 teaspoon of dry mustard, add 8 ounces of Sharp Cheddar Cheese and 8 ounces of Muenster Cheese gradually stirring continually until cheese melts.

4

Add 1 teaspoon of sriracha and remaining cup of milk, stir till creamy.

Add Noodles & Broil . . .
5

Pour in cooked pasta and most of the crumbled bacon, reserving a few tablespoons of the bacon to put on top.

6

Spoon into oven-safe soup bowls and place on a cookie sheet.

7

Preheat broiler on high.

Combine 1/4 cup of panko, 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan Cheese and reserved bacon in a small bowl.

8

Top bowls of mac & cheese with the panko mixture and drizzle with olive oil. Add sliced cherry tomatoes if you desire.

Broil for 2 minutes or until browned.

bacOn macarOni and cheese
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