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September 7, 2011

The Crazy Cooking Challenge - and Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese

I'm very happy to be participating in a fun monthly linky party hosted by Tina from Mom's Crazy Cooking, called Crazy Cooking Challenge, where each month there is a different food item featured and we each make a recipe using that featured food item and blog about it on the same day. But it's gotta come from a fellow blogger, which is totally fine by me because I have tons of mac and cheese recipes bookmarked from blogs that I stalk visit. Kinda like the Secret Recipe Club that I'm in, except that it's not a secret, and it's a personal challenge instead of being tied to someone else's blog. Either way, I'm game!


The first month, we are all making macaroni and cheese recipes. I couldn't pass that up, as I'm definitely a mac and cheese kinda gurl. Like, I'll try pretty much any kind of mac and cheese. And I'll expect it to be good, because it's mac and cheese for crying out loud! :) I chose a wonderful mac and cheese recipe from Christy's blog, The Girl Who Ate Everything. Have you guys checked out her blog? If you have, I'm sure you've fallen in love with all of her creations like I have. I love her food, I love her photography, I just love her site! So it was no surprise when I found this delectable mac and cheese dish on her site.

Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese
slightly adapted from The Girl Who Ate Everything
  • 3.5 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
  • 1/2 lb (8 oz) elbow macaroni
  • 1/2 of a small Vidalia onion, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3/8 cup hot sauce, divided
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 1 and 1/4 cup half and half
  • 1/2 lb sharp cheddar, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 oz pepper jack cheese, shredded
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley 
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 inch dish with cooking spray.

In a large pot, cook pasta according to directions on package. Drain. Return pasta to the large pot.

Melt 1.5 tbsp butter in a skillet on medium heat. Add the onion and celery and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the cooked chicken and garlic and cook for 2 minuets. Add 1/4 cup hot sauce and simmer until thickened for about a minute.

Melt 1 tbsp butter in a medium pot on medium heat. Add flour and mustard, stir. Add half and half, and remaining 1/8 cup hot sauce and stir for 2 minutes. Add cheddar and pepper jack cheese, then sour cream and whisk.

In the large pasta pot, add the the chicken mixture and cheese sauce in with the pasta and toss to combine well. Pour into the 9x13 greased baking dish.

Melt remaining 1 tbsp butter in a bowl and microwave until melted. Add panko bread crumbs, blue cheese, and parsley and stir. Pour over the mac and cheese and bake for 30-40 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes.

The only change we made was to half the original recipe, as well as up the chicken amount by a bit. We halved it, and we still got a casserole dish-worth out of it! So it was plenty for the both of us. We loved this macaroni and cheese so much. I love the addition of the blue cheese and panko topping - I always enjoy blue cheese to my buffalo anything, and the panko added a nice texture. I was surprised how much I loved the crunch from the celery, because usually I'm not too keen on celery. But it worked great in this dish. I've tried a different buffalo macaroni and cheese recipe also which I still need to blog about, and this one is my favorite so far. Definitely a keeper!

Won't you come join me at the Crazy Cooking Challenge? October is Chocolate Chip Cookie recipes!  

I'm linking up to a new linky that I was just told about - Simply Delish Saturday. Thanks for inviting me over, KB and Whitesnake! I'm also adding this to Miranda's Mac and Cheese Quest.

Oh, and don't forget to visit these other awesome blogs and click "Like" to vote for the Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese Recipe! I'd appreciate a vote.... I'm #16 on the blog hop below :)

Peace, and bacon grease!



Janie said...

I'm fairly certain I have this recipe but haven't tried it yet. I might have considered it for this month too. LOL.

It definitely looks delicious! :)

Angie - Big Bears Wife said...

Wonderful Mac and Cheese Recipe!

And I love the name of your site! my husband is a steakNPotatoes kinda guy haha

Stopping by from the MACARONI & CHEESE Linky Party through Moms Crazy Cooking

The Daily Smash said...

Hi I found your blog on the crazy cooking challenge. You have a great blog looks so yummy :) Check out my food blog

Lisa~~ said...

Great sounding recipe with the sour cream (my fave), chicken and panko...YUM!

My Crazy Cooking Challenge entry: Velvety Mac & Cheese.

Cook Lisa Cook

laxsupermom said...

That looks so good! Nothing says comfort like mac & cheese. Thanks for sharing.

Miz Helen said...

Hi Desi,
What a great Mac and Cheese recipe it looks fabulous! Thanks for sharing and hope you are having a great week!
Miz Helen

Unknown said...

Nummy Nummy Nummy! What a fantastic looking post - I love buffalo flavoring, and I love m&c -- I'm in love with the fact you're using bleu cheese!

Jennifer {Mother Thyme} said...

Hi! Being from Buffalo, I love all things Buffalo, including Buffalo Mac & Cheese which I have never tried, but I definitely will be now! Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe! Happy to have found you thru the Crazy Cooking Challenge! :)

Jihane @ Sinful Sundays said...

Delicious page of Mac and Cheeses. I need to bookmark! Your buffalo mac and cheese looks fantastic! It's one of my fave recipes. :)

Taste and Tell said...

What a fun event! I've made a similar mac and cheese, and now I'm craving it!!

Lyuba @ Will Cook For Smiles said...

Awesome! Love it!
Come see mine at

Unknown said...

I was just on another site that was hosting this too... Oh my word.. there are so many types of mac and cheese.. I want them all!!!

Rachel Parker said...

Um... YEAH, this is what I'm talking about! I love your food style (is that a real thing? because I'm saying it is right now).


Everyone is talking about this Buffalo Mac & Cheese stuff, and I have NEVER tried it! I think I need too!

This challenge was so much fun! Hope you check out my Mac & Cheese Bites too!

Desi said...

@ The Daily Smash - So glad you found me on Crazy Cooking Challenge! I'll be sure to stop by your blog too :)

@ Jennifer @ Mother Thyme - Ha, a true Buffalo-ian (is that a word?!). Are things called Buffalo because of the animal, or because of the city? I dunno, either way I love all things buffalo!!!!

@ Sinful Sundays - I know, I'm so excited to check out all of the mac and cheeses. If you are ever in need of a mac and cheese recipe, you know where to look for a great list of options!

Paige @ The Crunchy Mamacita said...

Looks yummy!

Paige @

Christy {The Girl Who Ate Everything} said...

Glad you liked it as much we do! It's a little but of work but worth it. Great site you have here!

Unknown said...

It looks great!! I bet the bleu cheese tasted pretty good!!

Faith said...

omg, i am drolling right now ... all these recipes! yummy!

Chameleon Girls said...

Blue Cheese? I never thought about using that type of cheese. Must be good. We will try this.

The Better Baker said...

What a wondermous combo of flavors! I just love this..I love m & c too...and panko crumbs! Don't know how I lived so long without them, but they sure add a great crunch. Thanks a million for your nice comment at my blog. Excited about next month's cookies at CCC! Come visit me again soon....

Gerry @Foodness Gracious said...

Your Mac looks so good it's criminal! Anything with hot sauce I have to marry, I love it!
Thanks for stopping by and now I'm a follower...looks like a fun place :)

Desi said...

@ Paige - Thanks, yours did as well :)

@ Christy - You're recipe is the bomb! Yes I took it back to the 90s!
Seriously though, one of my fave mac and cheeses!

Jenn@TheCakeDish said...

I am pinning this now! Yum!

Patty Albertson said...

This sounds good with the chicken in it!

Stopping by from Pattitudes. I'm #19 & still working my way through all the posts!

Tracey @ The Kitchen Is My Playground said...

Holy cow, Desi! That's a decadent mac & cheese variation. Coming to see you as a fellow CCC participant. I'm #5 with the Smoked Gouda Mac & Cheese. Yours looks great!
Tracey @ The Kitchen is My Playground

Amy said...

Sounds yummy, Desi! We might have to try this one!

Thanks for stopping by!

Amy @ A Nest in the Rocks

Nicole said...

Oh wow, sounds fabulous!

Chris said...

I love a good mac n cheese. Right now I want to make that poblano one that everyone is making.

I could have used some of this yesterday to go with our bbq chicken that I smoked.

Desi said...

@ Jenn@TheCakeDish - I'm blushing! I love when someone pins my recipe. Made my day :)

@ Tracey - I'm loving CCC, aren't you? I've already stopped by and checked out your delish Smoked Gouda Mac and Cheese. I've been a long-time follower of your blog for awhile now... LOVES IT!

Miranda | Mangoes and Chutney said...

I could have sworn I left a comment for this one already! Oh well, just know I meant to because I did have the window open a couple of days ago :) This is being added to the list, it sounds very good. Thanks for linking up to my Mac and Cheese Quest!

Liz That Skinny Chick Can Bake said...

Desi, I tagged you in a new blogger game. Hope you'll play along :) xo

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh your mac-n-cheese looks and sounds sooo good! I've been dying to try buffalo mac-n-cheese!

Desi said...

@ Meg - You MUST try it at least once! If not this recipe, then ANY buffalo mac and cheese. But I highly recommend this one :)

Lucas Kain said...

Oh, man. This dish is seriously delicious! Was one of the first I tried <3 Thanks! :)

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