Big and Bold Mac & Cheese with Bacon
September 1, 2022
by The Big Cheese
- 1 pound macaroni
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 pound bacon slab or thick-cut bacon
- 4 cups milk
- 4 cups shredded Big Cheese 13-year aged white cheddar
- 4 cups of mild white or golden cheddar
Step 1 – Preheat oven to 400°F. Cook macaroni al dente according to package and set aside.
Step 2 – Mix together 4 cups Big Cheese 13-year aged white cheddar and 4 cups of mild cheddar, and set aside.
Step 3 – Cut your bacon into 1/2″ pieces. In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, cook until browned and crunchy. Drain fat and set pieces aside on paper towel to absorb the remaining fat.
Step 4 – In another saucepan, melt butter. Stir in flour, dry mustard and black pepper. Cook for about 1-2 minutes until well combined. Gradually add milk and cook until the mixture is smooth and bubbly, about 10 minutes. You’ll want to stir constantly.
Step 5 – Remove sauce from heat and gradually add in 4 cups of the mixed cheddar cheese and whisk until cheese is melted and smooth.
Step 6 – Add pasta and mix until everything is coated. Pour half of the mac and cheese into a 9×13 greased baking dish or 12-inch cast iron skillet. Add 2 cups of the mixed cheese and half of the bacon evenly throughout and then the remaining mac and cheese. Top with remaining bacon and last 2 cups of cheese.
Step 7 – Bake for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is golden brown and bubbly. Remove from heat and let cool for 5 minutes before serving.
- No overcooked pasta – cook the macaroni al dente according to the package instructions. The pasta will finish cooking in the oven while it’s in the sauce.
- Freshly grated cheese – don’t use pre-shredded cheese. It doesn’t taste as good and also has additional anti-caking ingredients that you don’t need.
- Stir constantly – once the milk is added, you must stir constantly as it heats up and becomes thick. Otherwise, you’ll have burnt milk on the bottom.
- Lots of sauce – who likes a dry macaroni and cheese? At first when making this, you’ll think it’s too much sauce but believe me, the macaroni soaks it up.