I have never made mac ‘n cheese before that didn’t come in a blue box. There, I admitted it. I also can never remember my mother ever making anything other than the same blue box. But, having made homemade ricotta yesterday, today warranted something with cheese.
I was originally going to make this recipe from Smitten Kitchen. But then I got to pondering the protein content and did some browsing and ended up loosely following this recipe from Just A Pinch. And I do mean loosely. I’m pretty sure my hubby’s eyes bulged out of his head when he walked in the door. Not only did the kitchen smell like Chai (I made concentrate earlier using a kit from Goddess Teas), but it also smelled like cheese, onion, garlic, curry, and more. This simple mac ‘n cheese had turned into a Franken-Mac ‘n Cheese. And the result?
Possibly the best thing to come out of my kitchen.
Homemade mac ‘n cheese
This one meal made a a TON of food. Not only did I fill my entire round baker, but had to put some overflow into a mini baker. Even after Sam and I ate our fill, we have a lot left over…
Approximately 10 cups of leftovers.
So, here it is, the recipe for Super-Deluxe Mac ‘N Cheese. WARNING! This is in no way a low calorie or low carb meal!
Super-Deluxe Mac ‘N Cheese
- 16oz large elbow macaroni, cooked
- 4 – 6 chicken tenderloins (or 2 – 3 chicken breasts), cooked and chopped
- 1 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 1/2 bell pepper, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
- 5 cups colby jack cheese, shredded and divided (2 cups mixing and 3 cups for topping)
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
- 8oz cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 3/4 cup milk (I used raw)
- Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Cook chicken in curry powder and little bit of oil. Remove to the side and add onion, bell pepper, and garlic to the pan. Saute until tender, add chopped chicken and mix. Remove from heat. Mix cheeses (except for cream cheese) with chicken mixture.
Add cream cheese, butter, and milk to pasta and stir to coat. Add cheese/chicken mixture and stir until combined. Pour into greased 9×13 dish and top with remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered for 30 minutes. Serves 6 – 8.