Jalapeno & Bacon Mac & Cheese

Jalapeno Bacon Mac & Cheese

I don’t know what it is about September that makes me crave Mac & Cheese…but for some reason, fall and this deliciousness just go hand in hand.  The other night, we indulged with this Jalapeno Bacon Mac & Cheese as a side to our chicken.  You can make it for a side or you can make it for an entree.  You should probably just make it :).   We didn’t seed our jalapenos, so ours was a little spicy, but if you want less heat, just remove the ribs and seeds with a spoon from your jalapenos before cooking.  I also used turkey bacon…but of course, pork bacon would be excellent too.  If you’re in the Mac & Cheese mood too, here are two of my other faves:

BUTTERNUT SQUASH MAC & CHEESE
MEXI MAC & CHEESE

This recipe serves four as an entree and about six as a side dish.

Shopping List
1 pound of elbow noodles
8 pieces of bacon, chopped
2 jalapenos (remove ribs & seeds for less heat), chopped
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
2½ cups milk (I used 2%)
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
salt & pepper

Before you begin, make sure you bring a pot of water up to a rolling boil and then drop in your elbow noodles and cook to al dente (about 6 to 7 minutes).  Drain water and reserve hot pasta.

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, crisp up your bacon pieces.  Once crispy, remove just a few for garnish.  Next, stir in your chopped jalapeno peppers and saute just a minute.  Add in your butter and as soon as it melts, whisk in your flour.  Whisk for a minute before slowly whisking in your milk.  Reduce heat to low and continue whisking.  Whisk in your Dijon and shredded cheddar along with a big pinch of salt and pepper.  Your sauce should thicken up nicely but if for some reason, you find it too thick, just add in a little more milk.  Once your sauce has come together and is coating the back of your spoon (that’s a good way to test if it’s thick enough), then stir in your cooked pasta.  Toss everything together and then you’re ready to serve.

Ladle into bowls and garnish with your reserved bacon pieces.

I mean…it’s a creamy indulgence, but occasionally, that’s okay, right?

Enjoy!

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  • Sheaffer September 7, 2016 at 5:44 am

    YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Nicole September 7, 2016 at 6:17 am

    Love all your recipes! Wondering what your general rule is when it comes to groceries – organic, or do you not usually worry about that? Certain things you do? Thanks Shay! This looks delish!

    • Mix and Match Mama September 7, 2016 at 6:28 am

      It depends. If it’s a produce where we eat the outer skin (apples, grapes, strawberries), I really try and buy organic. If it’s something like an orange or banana, not so much. I only buy organic meat, dairy and eggs. I’m especially picky about that stuff.

  • Maria September 8, 2016 at 8:00 pm

    Oh my gosh!!! I think that the boys will FLIP if I make this for a football game. Yessssss! It is happening. Thank you, thank you!

  • Loren Ferruccio October 2, 2016 at 7:04 am

    Could you suggest a jalapeño substitute? I am not sure my kids would like any heat – they don’t even like pepperoni 🙁
    I suppose I could remove it all together but figured I would ask. p.s. Just ordered your new book 🙂

    • Mix and Match Mama October 3, 2016 at 4:28 am

      Substitute with 2 (4 oz) cans of chopped green chiles! No heat but same type of flavor!