Hang on tight, for this super easy, super fun smoked mac and cheese recipe! With only a handful of ingredients, before you know it you'll be enjoying the best mac and cheese of your life.
For this recipe, you will need a disposable roasting pan large enough for all of the ingredients. Alternatively, use two or three smaller ones. It's also a good idea to let the butter and cream cheese sit at room temperature for 10 minutes before you start cooking - this will make your life a lot easier.
Begin by boiling the macaroni shells. Pull them off the heat when they are al dente, or slightly firm to the bite. Strain, and save 1/4 cup of the pasta water for later.
Dump the macaroni in the disposable pan. One by one, add the cream cheese, butter, and dijon mustard, lightly mixing each time to spread the ingredients around. Then season with paprika and SPG, and mix again.
Now go ahead and empty 2 cans of evaporated milk in the pan, followed by the bacon bits. Mix well to get everything evenly incorporated.
Time to fire up the cooker! Bring your smoker (or grill, set up for indirect cooking) up to 300ºF (149ºC). Place the pan over indirect heat, and close the lid.
Let the mac and cheese cook for 15 minutes, then give everything a good stir. Add the pasta water, and 1 to 2 cups of milk, depending on how gooey you like it! Mix well, and give it a few minutes on the cooker to reabsorb those fluids.
For the final part of this recipe, bring the mac and cheese out of the smoker. Sprinkle with panko breadcrumbs, so the entire top surface is covered. Now you could let it sit on the cooker for a few more minutes. But we're not doing that: grab your kitchen torch and give the breadcrumbs a quick char.
You're ready to dig in! Divide the smoked mac and cheese into plates, or eat it right out of the pan. Either way, enjoy the cheesiest, tastiest mac and cheese you have ever had in your life.
See you on the next recipe!
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