Recipe from Food Network

We love macaroni and cheese, and it’s even better when I can make it a meal. 🙂  J and I both enjoyed this recipe.

I did make a couple of changes.  I took out the beer and I actually used rotisserie chicken from the weekend.  It made the whole cooking process go a bit quicker.

Ingredients:
3/4 lb applewood smoked bacon
1 lb cooked shredd or diced chicken
1 lb dry macaroni
1/2 c unsalted butter, 2 T butter
1 T minced garlic
1/3 c AP flour
3 c whole milk
3/4 t salt and pepper
3 c grated white cheddar
3 c grated mozzarella
1/2 c crumbled bleu cheese
2/3 c hot sauce
1 c Panko

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400.  Coat bottom and sides of 9×13 baking dish with butter or oil.

Cook bacon until crisp. Allow to cool slightly and then chop and set aside.

Cook macaroni according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt 1/2 c butter, then whisk in garlic until golden.  Whisk in 1/3 c flour and cook until golden, whisking constantly, about 1 minute.  Whisk in 3 c milk, salt and pepper and bring to a boil.

Add 2 c each of cheddar and mozzarella, and stir until melted.

Stir the cheese sauce, bleu cheese and bacon into the macaroni until well combined, then pour into the prepared baking dish.

Spread the chicken over the macaroni, then drizzle with hot sauce. Sprinkle remaining cheese over the chicken and then sprinkle on the Panko.  Melt remaining 2 T butter and drizzle over the Panko.

Bake about 25-30 minutes until golden and bubbly.

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I made this Pumpkin Mac ‘n Cheese for Thanksgiving this year.  I combined this recipe and this recipe, and then added in a few things of my own.  I liked that this recipe uses no heavy cream or butter.  And I used Whole Grain pasta to make it a bit healthier.

I thought this was delicious!!  I think most people ended up really liking it.  It’s definitely something different, but I really loved the mixture of different flavors.  (Ingredient amounts, especially the spices, are estimates, so go with your own tastes.)

Ingredients:
16 ou small pasta (I used whole grain Farfelle)
1 c milk
3 c pumpkin puree
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 T olive oil
1 c chicken broth
8 ou gruyere, shredded
8 ou sharp cheddar, shredded
1/2 c ricotta
2 T Dijon mustard
Nutmeg, mace, ground cloves – to taste
Salt & pepper, to taste
1/2 c grated Parmesan, divided
1/4 c panko

Directions:
Cook the pasta according to package directions until just al dente.

Preheat oven to 375.

Heat oil in a large skillet with high sides.  Saute garlic and onions until tender.

Add the pumpkin, milk and broth.  Bring to a boil then turn to a simmer for about 5 minutes.

Mix in the gruyere, cheddar, ricotta, mustard, 1/4 c Parm, and seasonings.  Remove from heat.

Combine pasta with pumpkin/cheese mixture.  Pour into a prepared 9×13 baking dish.

Mix the remaining 1/4 c Parm with the Panko, and sprinkle over the top.

Cover and cook about 20 minutes, then cook another 10 minutes until Panko topping is lightly browned.

I have to say this is probable the best I’ve made yet.  The thyme was so deliciously fragrant when it came out of the oven, and the cayenne added just the perfect hint of spice.  And the Havarti… mmmm… 🙂

We had my sister and brother-in-law for dinner last night, and I think we were all in agreement that this was pretty good. 🙂  I definitely like the idea of beginning with a roux, as I think it helps make it just that much creamier.  So good!

Ingredients:
8 ou elbows macaroni
1 T butter
1 T flour
1 c milk
1 T spicy mustard
1/4 c onion, chopped
4-5 button mushrooms, sliced
2 t thyme
Salt & pepper
1 t cayenne
4 ou shredded havarti
8 ou shredded sharp cheddar (plus about 1/4-1/2 c for the top)
1 c shredded chicken
1-2 tomatos, sliced

Directions:
Cook pasta according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.

In a large saute pan melt the butter, then add the flour and whisk until combined.  Whisk in the milk and mustard and onion and leave over medium heat until thickened. Whisking occasionally.

Add the thyme, salt and pepper, cayenne, havarti, cheddar and mushrooms and mix until cheese is melted.  Then mix in the chicken and cooked noodles.

Pour macaroni mixture into a prepared greased baking dish.  Place the tomato slices on top and then sprinkle with cheddar cheese.

Cover the dish loosely with aluminum foil and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes.  Remove foil and cook for another 10 minutes, until cheese is melted and begins to lightly brown.

I think this may be the best I’ve made! So good! I was just really in the mood for some mac n’ cheese, so I tried to think of some of the recipes I’ve seen lately, threw something together, and this deliciousness is what I got! 🙂

I added in a can of tuna, since J wasn’t around (he’s not a fan), and I threw in some mushrooms and some tomato on top. This would be great if I had added some sauted onions, and I wish I had some sharp cheddar as well. I did throw in a few wedges of Laughing Cow, which I think helped add to the creaminess, since I only used 1% milk.

The measurements are not exact, just guesstimates really.

Ingredients:
1 1/2-2 c pasta shells, uncooked
2 T butter
1/8 c flour
1 1/4 c milk (used 1 %)
1 T mustard (I used dijon)
Parsley
Salt
Pepper
Cayenne Pepper
3 wedges Laughing Cow Garlic Herb
1/2 c Colby Monterrey Jack, shredded
1/2 c Mozzarella, shredded
1 can tuna, well drained
4-5 button mushrooms, sliced
1 small tomato, sliced into 1/4″

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350.

Cook the pasta until just al dente and strain.

In a large saucepan, melt the butter, then whisk in the flour until blended and thicken. Whisk in the milk and mustard and season to taste with parsley, salt, pepper and cayenne.

Keep on medium heat and allow milk to heat through and thicken, whisking often. Mix in the cheese and mushrooms and continue to stir until cheese is fully melted.

Mmmm… look at that cheesy goodness! 🙂

Add the pasta and tuna to the cheese sauce and mix thoroughly, then pour into a square baking dish (coated with cooking spray). Place the tomato slices on top and season them with salt, pepper and parsley.

Place in the oven and cook for 20-25 minutes. Remove and sprinkle on some more cheese of your choice, then cook for another 5-10 minutes, until cheese is nice and melted.

Remove and enjoy!

Recipe from Mary Ellen’s Cooking Creations

This recipe came across my Google Reader and I had to try it. It looked so creamy and delicious – and it was!

But, I think next time I’d skip the Velveeta and use something like a swiss instead. I like a bit stronger cheese taste. And I’d probably skip the bacon – it wasn’t bad, but it really didn’t do a lot for me either.

I cut this in half; we definitely didn’t need the full recipe for only the 2 of us. We still had a lot of leftovers. This isn’t really a dish that you can eat more than one helping of. It’s just too rich and creamy for that.

Ingredients:
1 shallot, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 t olive oil
1/2 lb bacon, cooked, broken into small pieces, 1/2 T bacon fat reserved
1 T flour
2 c heavy whipping cream
1/2 t thyme
4 ou Colby/Monterrey jack cheese, shredded
4 ou sharp cheddar, shredded
8 ou Velveeta. cut into small cubes
Salt, pepper, hot sauce to taste
1/2 lb macaroni noodles, cooked
1/2 c Panko
2 T melted butter
2 T parsley

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350.

In stockpot cook onions in oil over medium heat, until soft. Add garlic for 1 minute until brown.

Add 1/2 T bacon fat and stir for about 1 minute, then add the flour for an additional minute.

Whisk in heavy cream and thyme. Keep over medium heat until reduced by 1/3 – stirring occasionally.

Add salt, pepper, hot sauce and bacon. Remove from heat and mix in the macaroni.

Let pasta sit and stir every few minutes until it becomes thick and pasty.

Transfer to a baking dish (make sure you oil it).

Mix together Panko, parsley and butter and crumble it on top.

Cover the dish and place in the oven for about 45 minutes. Remove cover broil until top is golden brown.

I haven’t really found another recipe I like as much as this one.

Again – this is something that I don’t really measure, I just throw in the ingredients until it looks like it’s enough.

Ingredients:
Macaroni noodles
Shredded Mozzarella
Shredded Swiss (not too much or it will overpower)
Shredded Sharp Cheddar
Dried Parsley
Ground Pepper
Milk and butter

Directions:
Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain and put into a large bowl.

Add milk – I would say it’s about 1/2 cup to 16 ou noodles, but you’ll be able to tell if it needs more. Then add your butter – maybe 1/4 c to 16 ou noodles. Mix together until butter is melted.

Add your cheese – I usually do about 3 parts cheddar, to 2 parts mozzarella to 1 part swiss. Then season to taste with paprika and pepper.

Place in a baking dish and sprinkle with cheddar cheese. Bake at 350 for about 1/2 hour – 45 minutes, until cheese is melted.

Okay – so Mac n’ Cheese is never healthy – but this is better than most! I got this recipe from Cara’s Cravings. She has the nutritional information on her blog.

This tasted really good, however, it was a bit dried out. Totally my fault. The Parmesan Crusted Pork took longer than I expected, so I left this in probably about 15 minutes longer than I should have. Next time, I’ll make sure to take it out on time. Also – I may add a bit more cheddar – just cause I looooove cheese. 🙂

Oh, and probably a little less bread crumbs – I don’t like quite that much of a crust on my mac n’ cheese. Just a personal preference.

Ingredients:
1.5 c 1% cottage cheese
1.5 cups skim or buttermilk (I used buttermilk)
1 t dried or 1 T prepared mustard (I used prepared)
Pinch of cayenne
1/2 t nutmeg
1/2 t salt
1/4 t pepper
1/4 c grated onion
1 c grated extra-sharp cheddar (I used shredded cause it’s what we had)
1/2 lb uncooked elbow macaroni
2 T grated parmesan or pecorino
1/4 cup bread crumbs (I used Italian cause it’s what we had)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375. Prepare a 9″ square baking pan with a light coating of cooking spray or oil.

In a blender, combine the cottage cheese, milk, mustard, cayenne, nutmeg, salt and pepper and puree until smooth.
In a large bowl, combine the onion, cheddar and macaroni. Then mix in the contents of the blender. Stir well, and then pour into the baking pan.
Combine grated parmesan with the bread crumbs and sprinkle over the top of the mixture.

Bake for 45 minutes, or until topping is browned and center is firm.