Food Truck Mac n’ Kim-Cheese

 Food Truck Mac n Kim Cheese
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The food truck revolution remains big in so many cities. I'm amazed at all the innovative creations coming out of these little kitchens and am continually inspired by their innovative dishes .

About a month ago I visited a food truck and on the menu was their house Mac n' Cheese with a "special sauce". Of course I had to get it. After taking a few bites I was in love and the sauce kicked up the cheesy goodness a few million notches. I went back to ask what made this drizzled sauce so incredible and was told it was kimchi.

Having worked with this fermented food for the past few months, I was not surprised. It carries so much flavor into dishes and it worked perfectly in their sauce. I am continuing to see Asian influences like these make their way into American comfort food and it's a trend I love.

I decided to put together my own decadent mac n' cheese but added the kimchi to the roux itself. I knew it would carry this incredible savory flavor. And it did. It is such a complex taste, one your brain will try to recognize, but just can't place it. The kimchi adds a background note you really don't have a reference is incredible

This is now my go to mac n' cheese. I have made it three more times because my craving for it is so strong. For those of you still on the fence with kimchi, I hope I am getting you closer to hopping on the fermented food band wagon and give it a try. 

I didn't make a special sauce as the food truck had, but I did drizzle my bowl of mac n' cheese with my favorite hot sauce. There are no words.

Food Truck Mac n Kim Cheese an amazing inspired dish

Food Truck Mac n Kim Cheese a dish you wont want to miss
This is one delicious dish!

Print Recipe

Food Truck Mac n' Kim-Cheese

Recipe from: Created by Cathy Pollak for | Serves: 8-10


  • 1 pound dry elbow macaroni
  • 1/2 cup kimchi
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 cups Sargento® Traditional Cut Shredded Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • 1/3 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 3 Tablespoons butter, melted


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Cook and drain macaroni to almost al dente.
  • In a blender, puree kimchi and fish sauce. In a large saucepan melt 1/2 cup butter and add kimchi puree. Cook over medium heat for one minute. Add flour, whisking to incorporate and cooking for one minute more. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly to break up any lumps. Add cream and continue to whisk. Bring to boiling point and boil for 2 minutes (keep whisking). Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Add shredded cheese and continue to simmer until all cheese is melted. Remove from heat.
  • Add cooked macaroni to the saucepan and toss to coat with the cheese sauce. Transfer macaroni to a buttered baking dish.
  • In a small bowl combine Panko and melted butter. Sprinkle over macaroni.
  • Bake for 20 minutes until the top is golden brown.

Disclosure: While this content has been made possible by Sargento, as always all opinions are my own.

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Post a Comment

21 Comments and 2 Replies

  1. Rachel (S[d]OC) 1

    Who would have thought cheese would work with those ingredients? You are a genius. I think a lot of food trucks are overrated, so I believe it must be better than anything similar you would get from a food truck.

    • Cathy 2

      Really? I have had some amazing stuff at food trucks and some mediocre things I guess. But this Mac n’ Cheese…oh my goodness it is amazing!!!

  2. I love this idea of food trucks, I’m just kinda sad they don’t have them anywhere near where I live.

  3. Maegan @ The BakerMama 4

    Oh Cathy! You’ve done it again! My kimchi and mac & cheese cravings can both be satisfied in one comforting dish! Can’t wait to try this!

  4. I am salivating over here!

  5. Say what?!? Kimchi in mac n’ cheese? That sounds crazy enough to be delicious.

  6. Kimchi! What a fabulous idea!

  7. Terry Covington 8

    This sounds great! I have started adding Kimchi to my fried rice (not an original idea, but . . .) and at first I thought ewwww, warm kimchi? But it really is awesome. If you enjoy cooked cabbage and onions, it’s the same idea — the flavors mellow just slightly, but there is that kick from the pepper flakes. I’m thinking of adding some kimchi to the filling of my spring rolls to see how that turns out, as I usually use cabbage in my spring rolls.

  8. Ashley 9

    Oh my this sounds delicious! And now I have a mac and cheese craving…. lol.

  9. Tieghan 10

    Whoa baby!! So incredible!

  10. Love this! Love all the cheesy recipes you’ve been posting, too, Cathy! :)

  11. Why oh why can’t I live somewhere that has food trucks! What a fun dish! I bet these flavors are heaven!

  12. I’m drooling over here!! Holy cheese heaven!!

  13. I can go for some mac and cheese anytime, anywhere. Love this!

  14. Nice way to enjoy some kimchi! I so need to make another batch and soon! IfWhen I make this I will probably use enough kimchi to turn it bright red! :)

  15. Woah. This is some SERIOUS mac and cheese! I love everything going on here – I would eat. The. Whole. Pan.

  16. Merna Schneider 18

    My son is dating an Asian woman and she sometimes cooks wonderful Korean gourmet dishes.
    I loved surprising the family with this version on Mac n cheese. It really is good. Kimchi in this is the equivalent of rose water in fruit based pies and desserts to make them outstanding

  17. Amanda 19

    Oh it sounds wonderful Cathy!

  18. Lindsay 20

    As an ex-pat living in South Korea, this makes me SO, SO, SO happy! Kimchi is amazing and adds so much depth to everything! I just wish cheese wasn’t so expensive here! Haha! Bravo Cathy – thanks for opening doors and tastebuds. Korean cuisine is absolutely awesome!

  19. Arlene 21

    I cut the recipe in half and made it for dinner last Sunday evening. My son in law kept making these hmmm., hmmmm., hmmm, sounds – said best mac n cheese he’s ever had! I made him guess the secret ingredient – could not guess. My daughter kept asking why add kimchi or fish sauce if couldn’t taste it? Good question – but my answer was it just adds to why it tastes so good!

    My search for the greatest mac n cheese has come to an end. Thanks!!

  20. Amanda 22

    Hey Cathy, I featured this on Copycat Crafts the other day, thanks for the great recipe! link to

  21. JEss 23

    I felt like this dish, while DELICIOUS, was barely traceable for the kimchi portion of it. I’m Asian American and eat Korean food all the time with a 4 star out of 5 star spicey level, and I felt this recipe was good for a crowd that is spice-shy. But if I wanted to kick up the Korean flavors when I make it again:

    Follow the post’s recipe as a base. For a stronger Korean flavor: I would use an alternate kimchi puree to include: 4 cups of kimchi plus another cup of roughly chopped kimchi in a separate bowl to add to the mixture at the end when the pasta goes into the cheese sauce to add some more texture to the mac and cheese. I would also add to the kimchi puree, 3-4 teaspoons total of fish sauce, and add in some heat, 2 tablespoons of gochujang spicy paste. The paste will add it’s own flavor to the mix so that’s really more of a test.

    But for that reason, I don’t recommend using Siracha as an alternative to gochujang because it’s not Korean and Siracha’s flavor profile is more sweet and spicy, than gochujang. Also, while Asian, Siracha is not Korean and should never be used with Korean related food.


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