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National Mac and Cheese Day: NewsChannel 7′s Holly Chilsen shares 2 recipes

Mac and cheese dish
Mac and cheese dish(Holly Chilsen)
Published: Jul. 14, 2021 at 8:51 AM CDT
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - July 14 celebrates one of America’s favorite comfort foods. It’s National Mac and Cheese Day.

Here are two recipes for macaroni and cheese to raise your fork to.

Bacon Mac n’ Cheese

Ingredients:

1 lb. dried elbow pasta

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup all purpose flour

1 1/2 cups whole milk

2 1/2 cups half and half

4 cups grated medium sharp cheddar cheese

2 cups grated smoked Gruyere cheese

8 strips cooked bacon, crumbled

1 cup panko bread crumbs

½ Tbsp. salt

½ Tbsp. Old Bay seasoning

1 tsp. black pepper

1 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

Instructions:

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  When boiling, add dried pasta and cook 1 minute less than the package directs for al dente.  Drain and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil to keep from sticking.

While water is coming up to a boil, grate cheeses and toss together to mix.

In a pan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Once melted, whisk in the flour and cook for about a minute, whisking often. Slowly pour in your milk/half and half, while whisking constantly, until combined and smooth. Continue to heat over med-low heat, whisking very often, until thickened.

Add seasoning and 4 cups of shredded cheeses, stir well until melted and fully combined.

Combine cheese sauce with cooked pasta. Stir in crumbled bacon.

Transfer half of the mac and cheese to a greased 9′ 13″ baking dish, sprinkle with more shredded cheese.

Top with the rest of the mac and cheese, top with more shredded cheese and panko.

Bake at 325 degrees for about 15 minutes until cheese is melted and it’s golden brown on top.

Buffalo Ranch Chicken Mac n’ Cheese

Ingredients:

1 lb. dried elbow pasta

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup all purpose flour

1 1/2 cups whole milk

2 1/2 cups half and half

2 cups grated pepper jack cheese

2 cups grated chipotle cheddar cheese

1 cup grated smoked gouda cheese

14-16 oz boneless, skinless chicken tenders, chunked

1 Tbsp olive oil

2 Tbsp Old Bay hot sauce (or Franks)

1 ranch seasoning packet

1 cup panko bread crumbs

½ Tbsp. salt

1 tsp. black pepper

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. red chili pepper flakes

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

Instructions:

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  When boiling, add dried pasta and cook 1 minute less than the package directs for al dente.  Drain and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil to keep from sticking.

Heat olive oil in skillet, cook chicken. When done, put chicken and 1 Tbsp hot sauce in a ziplock bag and shake to coat chicken. Then put ranch seasoning in bag and toss to coat. Set aside.

Grate cheeses and toss them together to mix.

In another pan, melt the butter over low heat. Once melted, whisk in the flour and cook for about a minute, whisking often. Slowly pour in your milk/half and half, while whisking constantly, until combined and smooth. Continue to heat over MED heat, whisking very often, until thickened.

Add seasoning and remaining hot sauce and stir. Add 4 cups of shredded cheeses, stir well until melted and fully combined.

Combine cheese sauce with cooked pasta. Add chicken and stir.

Transfer half of the mac and cheese to a greased 9′ 13″ baking dish, sprinkle with more shredded cheese.

Top with the rest of the mac and cheese, top with more shredded cheese and panko.

Bake at 325 degrees for about 15 minutes until cheese is melted and it’s golden brown on top.

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