Happy one year Blogiversary to us! We’ve been officially bringing you delicious food for ONE FULL YEAR! And what a year it was! In fact I’m not sure any other year has ever gone so fast! Our little blog duo has officially seen a new baby born (congrats Holly), a preschooler whose world was rocked by a new baby sister, a child who started kindergarten, and a teenager who has hit her stride. Holly and I are both another year older and wiser in our full time careers and yes, we’re both still married (Holly 10 years and myself 18 years) despite crazy chaotic schedules and demands (yay, guys-thanks for hanging in there with us!). But even more exciting, we’re both still loving blogging and bringing you our favorite recipes! For me, this would include this Buffalo Bacon Macaroni and Cheese which is pure, unadulterated decadence!
For our blogiversary, I really wanted to showcase a comfort food that to me is also celebratory-and one you likely only pull out for special occasions. To me Buffalo Bacon Macaroni and Cheese fills you up-with comfort, with cheesy goodness, with just a hint of fire. It’s relatively simple, homemade, and so, so good. Sure, I could have made a cake to celebrate. I could have made blogiversary cupcakes. But as I’d choose savory over sweet every time, I just couldn’t wait to share this one with you.
I’ve also changed my mind about this one being a recipe that you only pull out for special occasions. I could probably eat this Every. Single. Day. (don’t worry, I’m not GOING to…I just WANT to!).
Before I share this recipe with you, we both want to throw out a sincere “THANK YOU”- for visiting our blog, for following our Facebook/Instagram/Pinterest pages, for any comments or suggestions you have given us, and for being the best cheering section ever! Here’s to the next fabulous year!
And now…without further ado…I bring you Buffalo Bacon Macaroni and Cheese!
- 16 ounces elbow macaroni
- 1 Tablespoon bacon fat (or 1 additional Tablespoon of butter)
- ½ cup onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 7 Tablespoons butter, divided
- ¼ cup flour
- 2 cups milk
- ¾ cup buffalo sauce (I use Frank's Wing Sauce)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dry ground mustard
- ½ teaspoon ground pepper
- 1 pound sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 6 slices cooked bacon, chopped
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- ½ cup blue cheese crumbles
- green onions, chopped, for garnish
- additional bacon, chopped, for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350ºF.
- In a large pot, boil water.
- As soon as water is boiling, add macaroni and cook until al dente-no more than 6 minutes.
- Drain macaroni and place into a 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
- In a large skillet, melt bacon fat (or butter) on medium high heat.
- Add onion and sauté for 1-2 minutes until translucent.
- Add garlic and sauté an additional 30 seconds.
- Add 4 tablespoons of butter to the skillet cook until melted.
- Whisk in flour to create a roux (paste).
- Add milk and buffalo sauce and continue to whisk while bringing to a boil.
- Continue to cook on high until slightly thickened, approximately 3-5 minutes.
- Stir in salt, pepper and mustard.
- Add shredded cheese and stir until cheese is entirely melted and sauce has become smooth.
- Stir in crumbled bacon.
- Pour melted cheese over the macaroni in the baking pan.
- Gently stir to coat macaroni.
- Sprinkle top of the macaroni with the blue cheese crumbles.
- In a small bowl, melt the remaining 3 Tablespoons of butter (I used the microwave for convenience).
- Mix the panko bread crumbs into the melted butter.
- Sprinkle over the macaroni to form a breadcrumb crust.
- Place into the preheated oven and bake until browned and bubbly, approximately 30-40 minutes.