Bacon Topped Macaroni and Cheese

by zesty on November 18, 2008 · 27 comments

It’s Tuesday everybody!  I sure hope everyone is having a great day.  Yesterday, I had a craving for homemade macaroni and cheese and I thought I would go all out and create a bechamel sauce as the base for the cheese sauce.

It is a little time consuming but oh so worth the effort. So rich and creamy and stacked with flavor.  In addition to the bechamel sauce I thought I would top the mac and cheese with some crumbled bacon to give it a little extra flavor.  I had never tried the bacon addition before…. but I will definitely be doing it in the future.  It was quite delicious!

I was also excited that I had a couple of slices of bread left over from my Quick and Easy Whole Wheat bread recipe that I did last week.  So I just left it on the counter for a while and then jammed it in the food processor for some instant bread crumbs.  I love not wasting anything!

Stay tuned and follow along with this recipe and see what you think.

Béchamel Sauce Ingredients

  • 2 cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 small onion, peeled
  • 2 1/4 cups milk
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tsp. Thyme
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Nutmeg

Method

  1. Use cloves as tacks to adhere bay leaves to onion.
  2. Place onion in heavy saucepan with milk.
  3. Bring to low simmer over medium heat, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in separate heavy pan, combine flour and butter and cook, stirring, over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. This cooks the starchy taste out of the flour.
  5. Remove from heat and set aside.
  6. Remove onion from hot milk.
  7. Return cooled flour to medium heat and slowly add in hot milk, whisking to remove lumps .
  8. Bring to high simmer, reduce heat to low and cook, stirring, for 20 minutes.
  9. Add salt, pepper, thyme and nutmeg to taste. If there are lumps in the sauce that whisking will not smooth out, strain sauce through a fine strainer.
  10. Béchamel is the base for cheese sauce (add grated cheese)and stir until melted. Set aside until Macaroni is ready.

Makes 2 cups of sauce.

Macaroni and Cheese Ingredients

  • 350 g macaroni
  • 2 cups cheese sauce
  • 3/4 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 8 slices of bacon (cooked and crumbled)
  • 1/2 cup freshly made buttered bread crumbs

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

  2. Butter a 1 1/2-quart casserole.
  3. Put the cooked macaroni into the casserole, pour the cheese sauce over it, stir gently.

  4. Sprinkle the cooked bacon over the top and spread the crumbs on top of the bacon.

  5. Bake, uncovered, until the top is golden and the sauce is bubbling, about 30 minutes.
  6. Top with freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

  7. Enjoy!

Zesty Tip: Melt a little butter to stir in your bread crumbs before topping the macaroni and cheese.  This will help in the borwning process as well as the flavor.

Let me know what you like to add in your mac and cheese or the process you take when making your own. I can’t wait to hear all your comments.  I hope you have a great Tuesday!

zesty

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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

1 coco November 18, 2008 at 7:56 am

mmmmmmmm……… that’s a comfort meal~~~~ I bet it’s full of flavors and cheese!!! ^_^

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2 Megan November 18, 2008 at 8:25 am

This looks so warm and creamy! Full of flavor. Great job Cooking!

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3 Dee November 18, 2008 at 8:30 am

I believe you have achieved Macaroni & Cheese perfection with this! yummy! What a wonderful comfort food.

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4 Marlow November 18, 2008 at 9:04 am

Why had I never thought of topping mac and cheese with bacon???

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5 Liz Stambaugh November 18, 2008 at 9:47 am

mmMMMM Cheese and bacon!

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6 Laurie November 18, 2008 at 10:05 am

Yummy stuff. I just made mac and cheese too. I’ve added ham before, but never bacon. Good idea! My son would die over this since mac and cheese and bacon are his two favorite foods.

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7 Krista November 18, 2008 at 10:22 am

I’m not a big mac & cheese fan anymore, but in my “younger” years I used to add frozen veggies to the mix.
Your version looks so good, I may have to re-visit my no mac & cheese rule!

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8 Bob November 18, 2008 at 12:23 pm

Uhm, wow. I’ve been craving mac and cheese for some time, but my girlfriend won’t eat it so I haven’t made it. Maybe I can convince her since this has bacon. :D

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9 Biz November 18, 2008 at 1:28 pm

Um, anything with bacon makes it taste better! Looks great!

That is one side dish my daughter is requesting for Thanksgiving this year – I’ll have to ask her if she would like the bacon!

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10 Jo November 18, 2008 at 2:20 pm

I love this version of mac and cheese… and I’m like you, I add bacon to mine sometimes too :) Delicious Cory. Stumbled.

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11 Culinary Cory November 18, 2008 at 6:29 pm

I just love mac and cheese. Plus, adding bacon makes it some much more special.

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12 Joie de vivre November 18, 2008 at 9:13 pm

Holy moley, that is some SERIOUS comfort food!

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13 Erica November 18, 2008 at 10:47 pm

The mac and cheese looks like it has a nice crunchy coating on top (which I really love). I love your add ins, its fun to play around with them! They really add something new/different to old favorites!

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14 HoneyB November 19, 2008 at 10:57 am

This looks so good and comforting – something you would like to eat on a cold day – like today!

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15 Jessie November 19, 2008 at 11:01 am

Oh yum! Looks so good. :D I think the only thing that could possibly improve mac ‘n cheese is bacon. Well done!

+Jessie
a.k.a. The Hungry Mouse

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16 Nick November 19, 2008 at 11:59 am

Now that’s quite a gourmet mac n cheese. The most gourmet mac n cheese I ever made had cream cheese, sour cream and cheddar along with ground beef, mushrooms and spinach. It was good…but it made so darn much that by the end you were friggin sick of it.

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17 Jessie November 19, 2008 at 2:30 pm

Bacon and Cheese with macaroni, sounds really comforting and yummy! Such an easy recipe to make as well!

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18 ValleyWriter November 19, 2008 at 5:10 pm

Mmm… looks delish! We often make mac & cheese with diced tomatoes & ham, but next time I think I’ll try replacing the ham with bacon. Great idea!

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19 hornsfan16 November 19, 2008 at 9:04 pm

Wow – Bacon + Mac ‘n Cheese — divine!

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20 Foong November 20, 2008 at 6:07 am

I’m not much of a mac n cheese person but I love the sauce and can imagine using it for something else!

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21 Satria November 22, 2008 at 5:34 pm

It is happy to see your posting. Yes really informative article. I will tell this information again to my friend, oh yes I suggest you to check my blog on http://www.cheeseworlds.blogspot.com , I hope the article on my blog will be usefull for you… and we can share each other. thank you… ;-)

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22 Maya December 11, 2008 at 7:18 am

Nothing like home made macaroni!

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23 nathanael February 4, 2009 at 2:05 pm

i love mac and cheese and i am putting bacon in mine tonight. plus my 2 kids will eat it right up. keep the recepies coming.

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24 julie February 4, 2009 at 2:06 pm

good idea bacon with mac and cheese.

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25 Jackie January 30, 2010 at 5:06 pm

Hi Cooking

Thyme, is it fresh or dried.

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26 ZestyCook January 31, 2010 at 11:38 pm

@Jackie – It is dried

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