Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Bacon Cheeseburger Macaroni Bake

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Oh my gosh... it's already Tuesday?! Time is flying by for me because work has been busy and by the time I get home from working at the corporate pharmacy all day, I'm exhausted. Thankfully my parents who are visiting have been a great help at home. They've been helping out with the domestic stuff to make life easier for me since I'm usually drained and sucked out of any energy. Given the cold and snowy winter we're experiencing here in Chicagoland, I'm not only tired but craving anything comforting, including comfort food. Not too long ago, I prepared this Cheeseburger Macaroni Bake which is something I've managed to make on weekends to help me savor the free time I do have. Seasoned ground beef, beef broth, and {gluten free} pasta are coupled with a smoky bacon cheddar cheese sauce before baking up with a toasted topping of breadcrumbs. Comfort food at it's finest, that's for sure!...


Life has been busy outside of my site, which is why I've resorted to posting twice weekly. But hopefully as soon as my work schedule eases a bit, I'll be back to posting daily. I know I have a serious back log of recipes to share! Next week, I plan on gearing up to the upcoming Superbowl with some tasty bites perfect for a touchdown... so stay tuned.

A special thanks goes to the lovely folks of Cabot Cheese for providing me a sampling of their wonderful products to play with in the kitchen. Cabot has quite a few different cheddars, including classic, aged and flavored varieties.You can use whatever you prefer but this recipe was exceptionally good with the Cabot Smoky Bacon Cheddar! 

Bacon Cheeseburger Macaroni Bake
recipe adapted from Kevin & Amanda

1 tablespoon olive oil or bacon fat
1 onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 lb ground beef [90/10] meat
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 cups beef broth 
1 cup {gluten free} elbow macaroni

Cheese sauce:
2 Tablespoons butter
2 tbsp flour
3/4 cup milk
1 cup CABOT Smoky Bacon Cheddar Cheese, shredded
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup cooked crumbled bacon

Breadcrumb topping:
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup {gluten free} breadcrumbs
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

In a dutch oven over medium high heat, add oil. Once hot, add onions and garlic, sauteeing until softened. 

Add ground beef and brown. Drain and transfer back to dutch oven. Stir in onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste. 

Add beef broth and macaroni. Heat to boiling and once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer and cover pot, cooking for 12-14 minutes until the macaroni is al dente. Do not drain.

While pasta is cooking, prepare the cheese sauce...

In a medium pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour to create a paste. Slowly add the milk while continuing to whisk until mixture is thickened.

Add the shredded cheeseand stir until melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 

Pour the cheese sauce into the dutch oven and stir to combine with the hamburger and macaroni. Add the crumbled bacon.

In a small bowl, combine breadcrumbs, butter and chopped parsley.

Transfer cheeseburger macaroni to prepared baking dish and top with breadcrumb mixture. 

Bake in preheated oven uncovered for 25 minutes or until golden brown on top. Serve hot.

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