If you’re a fan of gouda and bacon, then this smoked gouda bacon mac and cheese is what you’re looking for. I mean I really shouldn’t even ask who is a fan of bacon, because who isn’t? It really adds a depth of flavor with this gouda mac and cheese, which makes it hard to beat.
So Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Every family has their traditional sides and for my family, you can never have Thanksgiving without mac and cheese. It’s almost more important than the turkey! While I usually just make my baked cheddar mac and cheese, I thought this year I might change it up and make a baked mac and cheese with bacon.
How did I come about this gouda mac and cheese you might ask? Well my best friend, Chris, visited me a few years ago in Portland. The first night he was visiting, I decided to make a beer can chicken and some smoked gouda bacon mac and cheese. Now the beer can chicken did not turn out but that’s a story for another time, but the smoked gouda mac and cheese was outstanding! It was so good, that when Chris visited a couple of months ago, he asked if I could make it again.
Never one to turn down mac and cheese, I didn’t hesitate. The problem was I hadn’t written down the recipe I made back then so I did my best to recreate it. Luckily for us, I think it turned out even better! So if you’re looking for a great side for Thanksgiving or just love some bacon mac and cheese, this one just might be what you’re looking for!
What Ingredients are in this Smoke Gouda Bacon Mac and Cheese?
- Unsalted butter
- Panko breadcrumbs
- All-purpose flour
- Black pepper
- Smoked gouda cheese
- Sharp cheddar cheese
- Parmesan cheese
How to Make Baked Mac and Cheese?
The key to a good baked mac and cheese is cooking the macaroni until just al dente before tossing in whatever cheese sauce you’re making and then baking in the oven. You can either bake the mac and cheese low and slow for 25-30 minutes at 350°F or just put under the broiler for a few minutes until the top is browned. Speaking of the top, you can go two ways – a crumb topping or a cheese topping. It really is just a preference and I go with whatever I feel like at the moment.
Do I Have to Use Cheddar Cheese as Well?
No. I just like the combination of the gouda with the cheddar cheese. I think it compliments it perfectly but if you want straight gouda cheese, that won’t be a problem.
Other Mac and Cheese Recipes:
Smoked Gouda and Bacon Mac and Cheese
- 1 lb macaroni
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 6 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 4 cups milk
- 3 cups shredded smoked gouda (3/4 lb)
- 3 cups shredded sharp cheddar (3/4 lb)
- 1 cup shredded parmesan cheese, divided
- 8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled up
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Add bacon to parchment-lined sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool before crumbling up.
- To make bread crumb topping, melt 2 tbsp butter in small pan over low heat. Once melted, add panko, garlic and 1/2 cup Parmesan and toss to combine. Set aside.
- In medium saucepan, melt 1/2 cup butter. Stir in flour 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.
- While making sauce, cook macaroni according to package and set aside.
- Remove sauce from heat and gradually add gouda, cheddar cheese, 1/2 cup parmesan cheese and the bacon. Stir in until cheese is melted. Add pasta and mix until everything is coated. Pour into a 9x13 greased baking dish. Top with bread crumb mixture.
- Put under broiler until the mixture bubbles and top is browned. Should be about 1 to 2 minutes. You can't leave unattended or it will burn. Remove from broiler and let rest for 5 minutes.