Bacon Macaroni and Cheese

January 20, 2011

Mac and cheese is a favorite around here.  All my kids know how to make it from scratch, without that day-glo orange glop that comes from a box.  It’s one of their go-to dishes when they make dinner.  Or lunch.  Or just a snack.

But, because everything is better with bacon, I decided to jazz it up and add bacon this time around.  Oh man, this is a heart attack on a plate but it sure was good for a splurge.

  • Bacon, about a pound
  • Cheddar Cheese, 2 pounds.  I used a mix of White Sharp and regular old Sharp
  • Butter, 6 tablespoons (or bacon grease)
  • Flour, 1/2 cup
  • Milk, 3 1/2 cups
  • Elbow Macaroni, 1 pound
  • Black Pepper
  • Bread Crumbs, I used Panko because it was in the pantry.  Any will do. Or make your own.

Fry up the bacon until it’s pretty crisp, drain on paper towels and set it aside until it’s cool enough to handle.

While it’s cooking, grate the cheese and put the water on for the pasta.

In a large heavy saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat  until it’s nice and bubbly.  Stir in the flour and cook for another couple of minutes.  Add the milk and continue cooking and stirring until it’s thick and smooth.

As I was doing this, my son (who is the King of Bacon Frying) asked what I wanted to do with the bacon grease.  It suddenly dawned on me that I should’ve used the bacon grease instead of butter to add even more yummy bacon flavor.   There’s always next time.

Add about half the cheese and a generous amount of black pepper.

Stir over low heat until the cheese is melted.  By now the pasta should be about done.

Crumble the bacon.

Drain the pasta and mix it with the cheese sauce.

Pour about a third of the mixture into a large casserole dish.

Add a layer of bacon and cheeses.  Repeat with two more layers.

Sprinkle the top with bread crumbs, a little more bacon and a bit more pepper.

Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes, until it’s nice and bubbly and beginning to brown.

Serve it up and enjoy!

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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Mishelle January 20, 2011 at 10:20 am

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…………. bacon and mac & cheese! Oh yeah Baby – this is tonite’s supper!! Thanks!

M

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2 Kelly January 20, 2011 at 11:14 am

Oh wow! Are you trying to kill us? lol
I MUST try this, at least once!
THANKS!
KK

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3 Karen Bove January 20, 2011 at 8:15 pm

It’s definitely not something I could eat all the time but the splurge is worth it once in a while. Oh, and we had steamed broccoli on the side so we could at least pretend we were eating almost healthy :)

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4 mallory m January 20, 2011 at 2:06 pm

mac and cheese is my go to recipe… and while i’ve added bacon before (its my absolute favorite ingredient) and made similar versions, i’ve never thought to layer and hide more cheese/bacon in the middle. you can bet i’ll be using that little trick here sooner rather than later!

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5 stephanie January 22, 2011 at 10:48 am

why. are. you. so. awesome. just stumbled upon your blog and now i’m in love with bacon. oops, i mean you. seriously, so rare to find step by step photos of recipes so THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for graciously showing us. have a blessed day!

love, (your new follower)
steph

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6 Sterling January 24, 2011 at 11:54 am

This looks AMAZING! I might have to make this … like once. It can not be healthy! :)

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7 Karen Bove January 24, 2011 at 1:33 pm

It’s not even remotely healthy but it sure is tasty for an occasional treat.

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8 Kay April 3, 2011 at 7:38 pm

I found this recipe last night and just made this Mac N Cheese for dinner. Delicious. My boys are a bunch of garlic lovers so I added some garlic powder, ground cumin, and a pinch of onion powder to the cheese sauce and OH MYYYYYYY! The 3 of us are fighting over the last of it.

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9 Deanna Williams April 17, 2011 at 9:53 pm

Made this tonight and used the bacon grease and it was AWESOME!! My husband said it was the best mac and cheese he has had. Great recipe thank you for sharing it!!

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10 Karen Bove April 17, 2011 at 9:58 pm

I’ve SO got to make it again using the bacon grease! I’m glad you enjoyed it:)

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11 Lyndsey October 23, 2011 at 9:16 pm

Made this for my daughter’s 6th birthday earlier this month and made it again tonight. The birthday batch was made with butter. This one was made with bacon grease. I also made this for a family we’re friends with who are in need of help. One tip I’ve picked up is that it is much easier to use clean kitchen shears and cut the bacon before you fry it. Then, use a slotted spoon to scoop it out of the grease.

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12 karenbove October 24, 2011 at 10:25 am

Which version did you prefer? And funny about cutting bacon with scissors… they finally dawned on me last time I cooked bacon. It was so much easier!

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13 Lyndsey October 27, 2011 at 12:38 am

Oh, I preferred the bacon fat. Hands down. But I also subbed colby jack rather than white cheddar the second time, so that may have played into it, too.

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14 Linda January 23, 2012 at 5:25 pm

I tried your recipe last night for dinner. It was out of this world!! I used smoked Gouda and white cheddar cheeses. And by the way, I used the bacon fat version. Thanks for posting!

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15 karenbove January 23, 2012 at 5:37 pm

Smoked Gouda and Bacon? That is heaven on a plate! Glad you enjoyed it.

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16 Harry September 14, 2012 at 8:08 am

The simplicity of this recipe makes it the winner of the Bacon Mac & Cheese contest (if there is one). You can adapt it any way you want, nicely done. I’ve made it in big batches for family gatherings, and there are never leftovers. Now people ask me to bring it to parties- I usually make one as the recipe describes and one with added jalapenos, ’cause you know, some people like the heat ; )

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17 karenbove September 14, 2012 at 8:38 am

Thanks Harry! A jalapeno (or two) sounds like a perfect addition. For those who don’t like the heat, maybe a little sweet red bell pepper instead?

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