Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese with Kale and Bacon #ChoppedAtHome

An easy recipe for stovetop macaroni and cheese loaded with kale and crumbled bacon and topped with crushed oyster crackers.

Macaroni and Cheese with Kale and Bacon #ChoppedAtHome

I am obsessed with the show Chopped on Food Network. I like to play along when I watch the show coming up with ideas of what I would make with the ingredients in the basket and choosing what dish I think is going to be chopped. I love watching the creativity of the chef’s and watching what dishes they come up with.

Since I am such a fan of the show I jumped at the chance when Sargento® challenged me to take the Chopped At Home Challenge. My “basket” included Sargento® Chef Blends 4 State Cheddar, Kale, Oyster Crackers and Bacon.

What would you make with these ingredients?

Macaroni and Cheese with Kale and Bacon #ChoppedAtHome
Macaroni and Cheese with Kale and Bacon #ChoppedAtHome

I couldn’t resist making macaroni and cheese. It’s pure comfort food. Sargento® Chef Blends 4 State Cheddar is perfect for this sophisticated mac n cheese. The blend of Sharp Wisconsin Cheddar, Sharp Vermont Cheddar, Sharp New York Cheddar and Mild California Cheddar cheeses come together to offer true Cheddar enthusiasts a complex, full range of delicious flavor.

Macaroni and Cheese with Kale and Bacon #ChoppedAtHome

This rich and creamy macaroni and cheese is tossed with chopped kale and crumbled bacon and topped with crushed oyster crackers for a little crunch.

This was definitely a Chopped winner with my family. Once you give it a try I’m sure it will be a winner with your family too.

Now it’ time for you to take the Chopped At Home Challenge! What recipe would you submit to the Chopped At Home contest featuring Sargento cheese?

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Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese with Kale and Bacon

An easy recipe for stovetop macaroni and cheese loaded with kale and crumbled bacon and topped with crushed oyster crackers.

  • Author: Jennifer
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 -6 servings 1x

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 pound penne rigate
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups half and half
  • 1/2 Tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 7.5 ounce package Sargento Chef Blends 4 State Cheddar
  • 6 slices cooked bacon (crumbled)
  • 2 cups chopped kale
  • 1/4 cup oyster crackers

Instructions

  1. Cook pasta per package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic and cook for about 30 seconds more until fragrant.
  3. Stir in flour and mix until butter is absorbed and mixture is paste like.
  4. Gradually stir in half and half, about a half a cup at a time stirring constantly until thick and creamy.
  5. Stir in dijon mustard, salt and pepper.
  6. Turn off heat add cheese and stir until cheese is melted.
  7. Stir in cooked pasta, kale and bacon. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Place oyster crackers in a small resealable bag. Using a mallet or palm of hand gently crush crackers. Sprinkle over pasta.
  9. Serve immediately.

Did you make this recipe?

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Available in 30 versatile varieties, unique blends and distinct cuts, Sargento Shredded Cheese is always cut from blocks of 100% real, natural cheese. For more inspiration, check out the Sargento Pinterest page Pinterest.com/sargentocheese/ or visit Sargento.com for more information. The Chopped at Home Challenge gives viewers a chance to create their best recipe using the selected basket ingredients, including Sargento Shredded Cheese, for a chance to win $10,000!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sargento. The opinions and text are all mine.

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