I love spicy food. I also like gourmet Mac & Cheese dishes. So why wouldn't I like this Bacon Jalapeño Mac and Cheese recipe?
What I really like about this recipe is that you can easily control the heat by modifying the number of jalapeños you add. Want less spicy, fewer jalapeños. Want more heat, add more jalapeños! That simple.
This Mac & Cheese is packed with flavor and a sidekick of heat! If you don't like spicy food, you can completely omit the jalapeños. I've never made it without the jalapeños but I'm sure it would turn out great. Only thing is you will be missing out for sure!
💭 Recipe Tip
While you can pretty much use any brand of cream cheese, I highly recommend you use Philadelphia brand cream cheese. You will taste the difference.
If you've ever wondered what part of the pig Bacon comes from check out the picture below. Surprised?
🥓 How to Make Bacon
If you struggle to make bacon perfectly, I've put together a short tutorial on How to Make Perfect Bacon - 3 Ways. Check it out! My preferred method is baking it in the oven.
And don't throw away that bacon grease! Bacon is expensive and the grease is great for making Scrambled Eggs, Grilled Cheese, Popcorn and even hash browns. It can keep up to 3 months if properly stored in the refrigerator.
For more of my great Macaroni & Cheese recipes, make sure you check out my collection of Gourmet Mac & Cheese Recipes. Some of my favorites are my Mexican Taco Mac & Cheese, my Easy Baked Mac and Cheese, my Low and Slow Mac & Cheese and my Whiskey Macaroni and Cheese.
🌶 How to Handle Hot Peppers
The capsaicin in hot peppers is what makes peppers hot. If you handle hot peppers gloveless, it’s a guarantee that you’re in for a nasty case of chili burn, both on your fingers and anywhere you rub. Like your face. Ouch!
Even if you wear disposable gloves, be careful about what you touch. The gloves are going to protect your fingers, but touching any part of your body with the gloves after you’ve handled hot peppers can lead to severe chili burn.
Resist the temptation to rub your eyes. Wait until you’ve removed your gloves and washed your hands thoroughly with soap.
🌡️ How Hot Are the Peppers
The Scoville Scale is the measurement that tells you the spiciness of a given type of pepper.
|Pepper Type||Scoville Rating (Heat)|
|Tabasco & Cayenne||30,000-50,000|
💭 What is Al Dente
When making Mac and Cheese, it's important to cook the pasta al dente to ensure to best texture possible. If you are not familiar with the term "al dente", it means cooking the pasta so it's still chewy and form and that it will hold its shape when the sauce is added to it.
For more great recipes with Fresh Jalapeños, I suggest you check these recipes out:
📋 Gather your Ingredients
You will need the following ingredients to make this Bacon Jalapeño Mac & Cheese recipe (see recipe card for quantities): Vegetable Oil, Yellow Onion, Jalapeños, Garlic Cloves, Macaroni, Milk, Cream Cheese, Sharp Cheddar Cheese, Bacon, Soda Crackers and Salt & Pepper.
🥣 How to Make Bacon Jalapeño Mac and Cheese
Place oil, onion, jalapeños, and garlic into a large skillet and sauté over medium heat until the onions are translucent and fragrant.
Meanwhile, bring a pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add your macaroni noodles and cook until al dente. Drain and set aside.
Place the milk and cheese into the skillet and whisk until the cheese has melted approximately 10 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper.
Mix your macaroni noodles into your sauce until well combined.
Add the crushed crackers and bacon pieces on top. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes.
Bacon Jalapeño Mac and Cheese
- 1 tablespoon Vegetable Oil
- ½ Cup Yellow Onion, Chopped
- 1 Fresh Jalapeño, Finely Diced
- 2 Garlic Cloves, Minced
- 16 oz Elbow Macaroni
- 2 Cups Milk
- 8 oz Cream Cheese, Softened
- 8 oz Sharp Cheddar Cheese, Shredded
- 1 Pkg Bacon, Cooked and Diced
- 1 Sleeve Soda Crackers, Finely Crushed
- Salt and Pepper, to Taste
- Place oil, onion, jalapeños, and garlic into a large skillet and sauté over medium heat until the onions are translucent and fragrant.
- Meanwhile, bring a pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add your macaroni noodles and cook until al dente. Drain and set aside.
- Place the milk and cheese into the skillet and whisk until the cheese has melted, approximately 10 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Mix your macaroni noodles into your sauce until well combined.
- Add the crushed crackers and bacon pieces on top. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes.
Nutritional information provided for this recipe is based on 1 serving. This information is an estimate and may vary based on several factors. If nutritional information is important to you and your diet, please verify this recipe with a Registered Dietitian.