Quadruple Cheese Macaroni with Smokey Bacon


If decadence is not your thing…look away quickly.  All I can say is, this is comfort food.  Food that will take away all your worries, except that pesky waistline issue.

If I am going to make homemade Mac n’ Cheese, it just has to be over the top, why bother otherwise. 

Using four kinds of cheese gives added complexity along with the Applewood Smoked Bacon and the panko crumbs on top give that bit of crunch for a nice textural experience.

Crunchy top…creamy inside….it’s heaven.

And, if you happen to have a bottle of our 2008 Noble Pig Pinot Noir hanging around, THIS is the rich, buttery, cheesy pairing I have been shouting to the mountaintops about for months.  This dish shared with a cool climate wine like ours…gives this sublime mouthfeel when the acidity of the wine and fat from the cheese meet each other in the mouth.  It’s heaven, just heaven.  Of course you’ll have to try it for yourself.

Preheat oven to 350o F.  Spray a 3-quart baking dish that can also withstand the broiler with cooking spray.  Bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta.  Cook rotini pasta according to package directions and drain.

Cook bacon until crisp and transfer to a dish with paper towels to absorb the fat.  Pour of bacon fat drippings, reserving 2 Tablespoons in the pan.  Add 1 Tablespoon butter.

Whisk flour into butter and bacon fat until smooth and cook for one minute to remove flour taste.  Whisk in milk.  Stir in onion flakes, garlic power, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil and reduce heat, simmering about 2 minutes.  Toss together cheddar, Monterey Jack and mozzarella cheese.  Remove sauce from heat and whisk in the American cheese and about 1-1/2 cups of the cheeses.  Toss the bacon with the remaining shredded cheese.

Combine cooked pasta with the cheese sauce.  Pour half of it into the baking dish.  Sprinkle with a heavy-hand of the bacon-cheese mixture.  Repeat with one more layer.  Melt 3 Tablespoons butter and combine with 3 Tablespoons panko breadcrumbs.  Sprinkle over the top layer.

Bake for 20 minutes and then broil for 3-5 minutes to get the top nice and brown.

Delish!

Quadruple Cheese Macaroni with Smokey Bacon

1 pound rotini pasta
1 pound Applewood smoked bacon
4 Tablespoons butter, divided
3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups whole milk
1 teaspoon onion flakes
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
8 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese
4 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese
4 ounces shredded mozzarella
8 slices American cheese slices
3 Tablespoon panko breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 350o F.  Spray a 3-quart baking dish that can also withstand the broiler with cooking spray.  Bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta.  Cook rotini pasta according to package directions and drain.

Cook bacon until crisp and transfer to a dish with paper towels to absorb the fat.  Pour of bacon fat drippings, reserving 2 Tablespoons in the pan.  Add 1 Tablespoon butter.

Whisk flour into butter and bacon fat until smooth and cook for one minute to remove flour taste.  Whisk in milk.  Stir in onion flakes, garlic power, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil and reduce heat, simmering about 2 minutes.  Toss together cheddar, Monterey Jack and mozzarella cheese.  Remove sauce from heat and whisk in the American cheese and about 1-1/2 cups of the cheeses.  Toss the bacon with the remaining shredded cheese.

Combine cooked pasta with the cheese sauce.  Pour half of it into the baking dish.  Sprinkle with a heavy-hand of the bacon-cheese mixture.  Repeat with one more layer.  Melt 3 Tablespoons butter and combine with 3 Tablespoons panko breadcrumbs.  Sprinkle over the top layer.

Bake for 20 minutes and then broil for 3-5 minutes to get the top nice and brown and crunchy.

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Post a Comment

20 Comments

  1. Mmmmm! I love cheese! this looks scrumptious! :)

    Reply
  2. Julia 2

    You had me at bacon! And I love the wine pairing suggestions. Still wishing the MA liquor laws would change so you could ship me some.

    Reply
  3. Amanda 3

    Oh wow, that looks like one delicious mac and cheese! And sooo much yummy bacon!

    Reply
  4. oh, wow… this looks FABULOUS !!

    and why, YES, I do happen to have a brand new shipment of Noble Pig wine – YUM !

    Reply
  5. Karly 5

    Oh, my. I’ll take some of that!

    Reply
  6. Roberta David 6

    OMG! This sounds and looks incredible, and yes, the wine sounds divine as well! Just can’t wait to try it out on the family! Thank you so much for all your wonderful recipes and ideas. I’ve learned so much from your blog. I can’t seem to stay away!

    Reply
  7. I hate being lactose intolerant.

    Reply
  8. Barbie with a T 8

    All our favorite flavors in one dish! Looks scrumptuous. I had mac n cheese last night, but without the bacon. Next time I will definitely try it with bacon. Why didn’t I think of that? It never entered my mind. Good tip. Thanks.

    Reply
  9. O M G… what else is there to say? My pants got tighter just looking at the picture. I wish I was eating it right now!

    Reply
  10. laura 10

    this looks incredible. not sure about the American cheese, but the rest of it sounds right up my alley!

    Reply
  11. Lea Ann 11

    Decadance is my thing and I still felt like I should look away. :-) omg Cathy this is just unebelievable! Gotta make it.

    Reply
  12. Oh my! That’s a real “Go big or go home” mac and cheese. I want some now. This is the reason I am glad SPP doesn’t like cheese or bacon. Imagine if he did. I’d be making stuff like this all of the time and I’d be HUGE.

    Reply
  13. medstudentwife 13

    Ohhhh myyy !!! I think I have found the dish for our Christmas day movie-pj fest :)

    Reply
  14. Cheese, bacon, pasta…swoon!

    Reply
  15. LilSis 15

    I DO NOT know why I’ve never thought of adding the bacon to the Mac & Cheese?? It’s two of my sons’ favorite things. I’m afraid if I make this, I’ll want to eat the entire dish!!

    Reply
  16. emiglia 16

    My friends will be thanking you for this recipe! (My jeans, not so much, but they are much less vocal and therefore more easily ignored).

    Reply
  17. Megan 17

    DELICIOUS! I added a bag of defrosted peas to the bottom layer of pasta and cheese to sneak some vegetables in there!

    Reply
  18. Rebecca 18

    I drooled all over my keyboard when you posted this – have a family gathering to attend next weekend, so now I have an excuse to make it! *happy dance* I don’t think I’ve posted here before, but I check in often – gorgeous photos, funny commentary, and dazzling food all in one place being a weakness of mine.

    Reply
  19. Anne from Olympia 19

    I made this on New Year’s Eve and it was the Belle of the Ball. Really, really a winner!

    Reply
  20. Tara 20

    This came out GREAT! I was a little worried that the american cheese wouldn’t taste so good, but it came out really well! Thank you for this recipe!

    Reply

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