Bacon and jalapeno pepper update ordinary mac and cheese, giving it great grown-up taste. I serve this comforting dish throughout the year.—Shelly Boehm, South Bend, Indiana
- 6 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
- 1 pound bacon strips, chopped
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
- 3 cups 2% milk
- 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded pepper Jack cheese
- 1 package (8 ounces) process cheese (Velveeta), cubed
- 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Colby-Monterey Jack cheese
- 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Dash hot pepper sauce
- 3 green onions, chopped
- Cook macaroni according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, remove to paper towels; drain, reserving 1 tablespoon drippings. Saute jalapeno in reserved drippings. Add milk and cheeses to pan; cook and stir until blended. Stir in the onion powder, chili powder, salt, pepper and pepper sauce.
- Drain macaroni; add to pan with the onions and cooked bacon. Mix well.
- Transfer to a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Cover and bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Uncover; bake 10-15 minutes longer or until heated through. Yield: 16 servings (3/4 cup each).
Originally published as Bacon Mac & Cheese in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2010, p113
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