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Smoked Mac and Cheese

I found this smoked mac and cheese recipe years ago in a magazine, and kept adding and taking away ingredients until I found the perfect combination. You can bake it in the oven, but grilling or smoking the dish is the real way to go. —Stacey Dull, Gettysburg, Ohio
  • Total Time
    Prep: 40 min. Grill: 20 min. + standing
  • Makes
    2 casseroles (8 servings each)

Ingredients

  • 6 cups small pasta shells
  • 12 ounces Velveeta, cut into small cubes
  • 2 cups shredded smoked cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2/3 cup half-and-half cream
  • 1/2 cup shredded provolone cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded Colby-Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke, optional
  • Dash cayenne pepper, optional
  • 8 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled, optional

Directions

  • Preheat grill or smoker to 350°. Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente. Drain and transfer to a large bowl. Stir in Velveeta, 1 cup smoked cheddar, cheddar cheese, milk, eggs, heavy cream, half-and-half, provolone, Colby-Monterey Jack, pepper jack, salt, pepper, paprika, and, if desired, liquid smoke and cayenne pepper.
  • Transfer to 2 greased 13x9-in. baking pans; sprinkle with remaining 1 cup smoked cheddar cheese. Place on grill or smoker rack. Grill or smoke, covered, until a thermometer reads at least 160°, 20-25 minutes, rotating pans partway through cooking. Do not overcook. Let stand 10 minutes before serving; if desired, sprinkle with bacon.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 403 calories, 23g fat (13g saturated fat), 117mg cholesterol, 670mg sodium, 30g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 1g fiber), 18g protein.
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