Spicy Chicken and Bacon Mac
Total TimePrep/Total Time: 30 min.
- 1-1/2 cups uncooked cavatappi pasta or elbow macaroni
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1-1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 cup 2% milk
- 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups shredded pepper jack cheese
- 2 cups shredded cooked chicken
- 6 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 cup crushed kettle-cooked potato chips or panko (Japanese) bread crumbs
- Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente; drain. Preheat broiler.
- In a 10-inch cast-iron or other ovenproof skillet, heat butter over medium heat. Stir in flour until blended; cook and stir until lightly browned, 1-2 minutes (do not burn). Gradually whisk in cream, milk, Cajun seasoning, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat; cook and stir until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in cheese until melted. Add pasta, chicken, bacon and jalapeno; cook and stir until heated through. Sprinkle chips over top.
- Broil 3-4 inches from heat until chips are browned, about 30 seconds.
Test Kitchen tips
Nutrition Facts1 cup: 673 calories, 50g fat (28g saturated fat), 175mg cholesterol, 705mg sodium, 26g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 1g fiber), 32g protein.
Follow along as we show you how to make these fantastic recipes from our archive.
Oct 24, 2018
Macaroni, cheese, chicken, bacon and jalapeno? What could be better? We loved this dish. I doubled the amount of pasta, so increased the other ingredients accordingly. This mac
Oct 22, 2018
OMG!!! I have made this twice in the last 2 weeks and well received both times. First time was for a potluck, and I made as directed with a few tweaks.Since I was traveling with this, I made it in casserole dish and did not add chips until I arrived at venue in order to keep them crisp. I also found I needed to add an additional 1/2 cup milk to loosen up the sauce because I was going to bake in oven and didn't want it to dry out. I assembled it the night before and baked for 35 minutes until hot and bubbly the day it was needed. This was a huge hit! Second time making it was last night at home for husband. I cut the recipe in half and used jarred sliced jalapenos in place of fresh because it was what I had on hand. I also added a bit of the brine to the white sauce and cheese. I found I still needed to add a bit more milk to make it ooey gooey over the top yum! This is a great one panOMG!!! I have made this twice in the last 2 weeks and well received both times. First time was for a potluck, and I made as directed with a few tweaks.Since I was traveling w skillet meal that goes together quickly using rotisserie chicken and precooked bacon. I used jalapeno kettle chips on top. Yummy, yummy, yummy! Lynne, Volunteer Field Editor
Jul 30, 2018
Just when you thought mac 'n cheese couldn't get any better. What's not to love when you add bacon and chicken? Love the extra crunchy topping using Kettle Chips. I used half and half as I didn't have whipping cream, but it was still creamy goodness.
Jul 29, 2018
this was amazing! easy and delicious meal!! my company loved it! shared recipe with them!! Deb P VFE
Jul 29, 2018
The only change we made was using Bowtie pasta because we had a lot, and Jalapeño flavored Kettle Cooked Chops, again because we had on hand. Creamy, cheesy, spicy (but not too spicy, for us anyway), chips are great for flavor and texture, especially jalapeño chips. Highly recommend!
Jul 22, 2018
I'm a diabetic with high blood pressure. I would have to switch to 1% milk, low sodium cheese, but don't want to sacrifice taste!!! It sounds delish!!!
Jul 12, 2018
I used elbow macaroni and also I used half and half since I didn't have whipping cream. For crumbs, I did use the panko bread crumbs and a 4-Mexican cheese blend as I didn't have pepper-jack cheese. So it was actually 2 changes since the macaroni and panko were alternate choices. This dish is delicious! delowenstein
Jul 12, 2018
My husband and I loved this dish. I used panko as that’s what I had on hand, I will be making this again for sure!
Jul 11, 2018
This recipe takes a little time to prep, but the end result is worth it! I did add a little more cajun seasoning and I used the panko crumb topping option. Delicious!
Jul 10, 2018
OMGosh! What a winner. We had this for dinner tonight and it is fabulous! I cannot say enough good things about this dish. I followed the recipe to the letter and it was wonderful. Do use the potato chips at the end. They give it such a nice twist. Even hubby who does not care for mac and cheese cleaned his plate and said he liked it. That! is saying something. I highly recommend this recipe. Volunteer Field Editor