Saturday, March 31, 2012

Baked Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese

Mac and Cheese is one of those comfort foods that everyone loves in some form. Growing up, I never had the stuff from a box, and I was OK with that. Mom always made it from scratch using Velveeta, milk, butter, and whatever pasta we happened to have. As I started making it for myself I started adding pepperjack cheese, broccoli, bread crumbs, and baking it from time to time. Then one day I came across this recipe from How Sweet It Is and we decided we should try it. (By the way, that blog is definitely worth a look...good stuff happens there..)

On a side note, Law School Husband made a big decision this week. He decided that he did not want to continue this career path. After talking with several professors, friends, and me, he withdrew from school and is now searching for what will truly make him happy. I am very supportive of this decision, however I can no longer call him Law School Husband! From now on, he will be known as TBDH (to-be-determined-husband or the-best-damn-husband).

Back to food, I am not typically a fan of food that has buffalo in the title, but this intrigued me. It doesn't have much buffalo sauce and it is a change from standard mac and cheese. So we gave it a shot. I have made this several times now and it gets better every time I make it!

Time: 35ish min
1 lb pasta (shells, elbow macaroni, whatever floats your boat)
2 cups of cooked chicken, shredded or cubed (I almost always use some sort of leftovers for this)
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp flour
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup shredded monterey jack cheese, about 4 oz or half a small brick
1/3 cup shredded cheddar, and a little extra for topping
1/3 cup buffalo sauce
1 tsp garlic pepper
salt and black pepper
1/3 cup bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Cook chosen pasta according to standard directions, drain and set aside.

In a medium-sized sauce pan over medium heat, melt the tablespoon of butter. When it had melted, add the flour and whisk to make it smooth. Let your roux sit for a bit and get a pretty golden color.

Yours should look more golden than this...remember I do food, not photography.

Once the roux has become golden, add the milk and stir to mix in the roux. Continue to whisk or stir until the milk has thickened. Next, add in the grated cheese and keep stirring until the cheese melts in to the milkyness and everything become smooth.

Not quite smooth at this point..

Once it is all smooth, add in the buffalo sauce and garlic pepper. Stir it all up and add salt and pepper to taste.

So orange and delicious...
It if seems a little thin, it will be ok. Baking it helps it thicken a bit more. Once the sauce is seasoned to your liking, combine the pasta, chicken and sauce. I just dumped everything into the pot I cooked the pasta in but do whatever you please.

Mix it all up until everything is combined. Grease a 9x13 pan or a preferred casserole dish. This can also be made in individual ramekins if you feel like it. Dump the mixture in and make it even.

Mine is much small than a 9x13, but I was also only making a half recipe.

Top you pasta with some extra cheddar cheese and bread crumbs and throw it in the oven!

Mine was already in the oven before I realized I needed to snap a picture.
After about 20 minutes, the cheese should be bubbly. I recommend turning the broiler on for 3ish minutes to help the bread crumbs crisp up more and create a nice crust on top.

Dish it up and enjoy!

I'm tempted to try this with bacon, but TBDH was sure how the bacon would be with buffalo sauce...I just really like bacon. It is suggested in the original posting to top your plate with green onions, Gorgonzola cheese, extra buffalo sauce, or cilantro, but we like it just as it is.

Original post at

1 comment:

  1. If you made the Buffalo sauce with Sirachi instead of Frank's this would go well with Bud Light Lime.

    Makes me crave celery.