Making macaroni and cheese from scratch is so much more amazing then a box and anyone can do it. Yes, we all know that bacon makes anything tasty…but truthfully you could make this without bacon and it would be just as fabulous! The concept is very versatile so mix and match any cheese, pasta, meat or even add vegetables!
2 cups uncooked mini penne pasta
1/4 cup butter or margarine (I used margarine)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups milk (I used non-fat)
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
1 cup Pepper Jack cheese, shredded
1 cup cooked and chopped bacon
1/4 cup Italian breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons margarine, melted
Cook bacon about 10 pieces of bacon, cool and chop. Set aside until cook time.
Heat oven to 350ºF.
Cook pasta as directed on package. I used mini penne, but truthfully any pasta would do.
When pasta is almost done cooking, melt margarine in 3-quart saucepan over low heat. Stir in flour, salt and pepper. Briefly cook over medium low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth and bubbly. Quickly whisk in milk. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Stir in cheese. Remove from heat and stir until cheese is melted.
Drain pasta. Gently stir pasta and bacon bits into cheese sauce. Pour into ungreased 2-quart casserole.
Melt 2 tablespoons of butter or margarine in a small frying pan. Brown breadcrumbs over melted butter or margarine and sprinkle on top.
Bake uncovered 30 minutes or until bubbly.
KID TIP: Do all of your prep work and measuring in advance and have the kids "make" this!