©Life of a Foodie and Her Family 2008-2013, Lynn Tabor



Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese

This week's Alpha dinner is Mac and Cheese.  So the other day I was looking for some sort of different mac and cheese to make for Friday night.  I made the "Panera" version last time and it got so grainy in the crock pot on the warm setting.  It was so disappointing.

I had pinned a couple different versions of Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese.  I wanted to make a small batch to test it out, but none of them really stood out so I made my own up.

1/2 pound small pasta (I used pasta ruffles)
2 tbs unsalted butter
1 1/2 tbs flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
2 tsp garlic powder
1 1/2 cups whole milk
3/4 cups of shredded sharp Cheddar Cheese
3/4 cups of shredded mild Cheddar Cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 large chicken breast, roasted and chopped
6 tbs Franks Red Hot sauce (not the wing sauce)
3/4 cup Panko Bread Crumbs

Preheat oven to 350.

Cook pasta to al dente according to the package instructions.

Melt butter in a large heavy sauce pan over medium heat.  Stir in the flour, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Cook for 2 minutes.  Whisk in the milk and cook over medium heat until thickened and bubbly.  Whisk constantly!

Reduce heat to low and stir in cheeses and sour cream until melted.  Add in the Franks Red Hot sauce and chicken.  Stir well to combine.  Taste for seasoning.  (I started with 3 tbs of Red hot and went up to 6 since we like it spicy.  I would probably use less for church).  Stir in the hot pasta.

Spray a baking dish with cooking spray.  (I can't remember what the size is, but it is a bit smaller than a 13x9 dish).  Spoon the mac and cheese into the dish.  Sprinkle the Panko on top and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes.

This was spicy and we loved it!  When I make a full batch I think I will end up by using about 1/4 cup of Franks Red Hot so that it isn't to spicy.  I do have a small bottle to bring along just in case anyone wants to add more to their own servings.

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