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smoked cheddar and jalapeno mac and cheese in glass baking dish.

Smoked Cheddar and Jalapeno Macaroni and Cheese

This smoked cheddar and jalapeno mac n' cheese got my husband to drop the video game controller. It's that good.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Course Main Dishes
Cuisine American
Servings 6 Servings



  • 1 pound dried penne pasta
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • 1 jalapeno diced small
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups fat free milk
  • 2 cups smoked cheddar
  • 2 cups medium cheddar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 cups chopped sour dough bread
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder


  • Preheat oven to 350. Grease an 8 x 8 baking dish.
  • Boil water and cook pasta 5 - 6 minutes and then drain. The pasta should still be firm as it will continue to cook while you are baking it.
  • While your pasta is cooking , heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in diced onion and jalapeno. Cook 5 minutes or until softened.
  • Whisk in flour. Cook 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk. Once milk has warmed and mixture has thickened slightly, about 5 minutes, stir in cheeses, cumin, paprika, 1/4 teaspoon chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder and kosher salt.
  • Stir in pasta. Mix well. Transfer to prepared baking dish.
  • Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat, stir in bread crumbs, remaining chili and garlic powder. Cook just until bread is toasted, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle bread crumbs over the top of the macaroni and cheese. Bake macaroni and cheese for 25 - 30 minutes or until top is golden brown and the edges are bubbly. Serve.


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Keywords: cheddar cheese, cheese, Food, homemade macaroni and cheese, Jalapeno, Macaroni and cheese, Recipe, side dish, smoked cheddar cheese