Growing up, there was nothing quite like waking up to find out that it was a snow day! The extra few inches of snow and bitter cold meant that we would get to stay home, while my parents went off to work. I would watch my younger brother and sister as they played video games and watched movies in their PJs. Around lunch time, my brother would head over to the cupboard and pull out that special blue box, Kraft Dinner mac n cheese. It was like a snow day tradition. He would boil the pasta and set everything up and they call me to mix together the cheese sauce, because somehow, I make the best mac n’ cheese. It was so comforting and familiar and we loved it.
Fast forward a few years and my brother still tells his wife how I make the best Kraft dinner ever. But that’s not really important.
I really wanted to make some homemade mac n’ cheese. Something that would remind me of those orange cheese covered noodles, just a little more grown-up. I made a traditional recipe, but it just didn’t feel like a complete meal. The next time I had a craving, I thought about what I could add to complete the recipe. Cooked chicken seemed like an obvious choice. As I dug through the fridge looking for some leftover chicken to chop up, I found some bacon. I figured I would add that too.
I through it all together and hoped for the best. It was amazing. So cheese and gooey and just so good. I added a side of green veggies and I have a delicious and complete meal that I can serve my family at dinner.
- 2 cups chicken, cooked and chopped
- 1/2 lb bacon, cooked and chopped
- 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese shredded
- 1 1/2 cups marble cheese shredded
- 1/3 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 cup milk
- 1 tbsp butter
- 3 cups pasta, slightly undercooked. I like to use something hardy like penne or rotini
- Preheat oven to 350*F
- In bowl, mix together the chicken, bacon, and pasta until well tossed
- In another bowl mix together the cheddar and marble cheese
- Pour half the chicken mix into the bottom of a 9×11 pan. Sprinkle half the cheese blend on top
- Add another layer of chicken mix, followed by the cheese blend.
- Melt the butter and mix it in with the milk.
- Pour the milk over the entire pan
- Cover and bake for 20 mins.
- Remove the cover and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
- Return to oven (uncovered) and bake for another 10-15 minutes until everything is starting to turn golden brown.
- Remove from oven and serve!