I had the task to make a dish for our bacon-themed potluck at work.
Because I work with beer, I wanted to somehow make something with beer. However, I was also craving macaroni and cheese, so I put together this recipe.
The beer flavor is subtle in the finished product (although when I let my little girl taste it, the first thing she said was “it tastes like beer”. Yes she’s tasted beer.
And of course lots of bacon.
Make a roux from 3 tablespoons of butter and 1/4 cup flour.
Mix in 2 cups of milk, 1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream, and 12 ounces of beer. If you wanted a less subtle beer taste, you could use a darker, heavier beer. I used Miller High Life. Add your spices: 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon dried mustard powder, 1/4 teaspoon each cayenne and white pepper. Cook over medium heat until thickened.
Add 15 ounces of Velveeta and let melt. Because I was putting this in a crock pot, I wanted it to be stable and Velveeta does that.
Add 4 cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese.
And 12 slices of thick-cut bacon, cooked and chopped.
And add your cooked noodles. I like to use Cellentani for Macaroni and cheese because it holds the sauce so well.
Taste and adjust the seasoning.
At this point you can put in a casserole dish and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes, covered, then a minute under the broiler if you like the top browned, or you can do what I did and add it to a slow cooker. I took it to work and cooked it on low for about 3 hours (just to get it ready for lunch). It holds beautifully. Or you can eat it straight out of the pot. I admit I tried it and it was pretty good that way too!
Bacon and Beer Macaroni and Cheese
- 1 pound Macaroni or Cellentani
- 4 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 15 ounces Velveeta
- 2 cups milk
- 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- 12 ounces beer
- 12 slices thick cut bacon cooked and chopped
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon white or black pepper
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup flour
- Boil the pasta as directions on box call for. Add butter to a pan on medium heat and melt. Add flour and mix, cooking for a minute until bubbly. Add milk, beer and spices and cook until thickened. Add Velveeta and melt. Add cheddar and melt. Add bacon and cooked pasta. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Bake in casserole covered at 350 for 30 minutes, or add to slow cooker and cook on low for 3 hours.