I’m a huge fan of comfort foods. Who isn’t? This Homemade Bacon Broccoli Mac and Cheese Recipe is about as comforting as they get! It’s fairly easy to make and the kids will love it. It’s a great way to try to slip them some broccoli too! I love meals like this that have some baking time so that I can get a few things done around the house while dinner is finishing up. This is also a great leftover meal as it will reheat nicely!
3-4 slices of bacon, cooked
5-6 ounces freshly grated cheddar cheese [see below]
3 cups broccoli florets, steamed or blanched
8 oz pasta [measured by weight]
¼ cup [1/2 stick] unsalted butter
¼ cup all purpose flour
2 cups whole milk, room temperature
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp garlic powder
⅛ tsp black pepper
Season with additional salt and pepper to taste, if desired
Pre-heat oven to 350
Measure out all of your ingredients, chop your broccoli and grate your cheeses.
Boil pasta per package instructions [times will vary a smidge by brand/shape] until al dente. Drain and set aside once done.
While the pasta cooks, you can start your sauce and your broccoli.
Cook broccoli. You can do this to your liking but I’m a big fan of quickly blanching broccoli in hot water until the florets are bright green and tender.
For the sauce, melt ½ stick of butter [1/4 cup] over medium heat.
Add flour and whisk constantly while the flour cooks off into a roux, approx. 3 minutes..
Next season with ¼ tsp salt and ⅛ tsp black pepper [add extra to taste]
Slowly pour in your milk, whisking constantly until smooth and fully incorporated. Remove from heat. Sauce will thicken as it rests.
Add pasta and broccoli florets to a 9-inch baking dish [or larger]
Sprinkle 5-6 ounces of freshly grated cheese on top of the pasta.
Pour your cream sauce over the noodles and cheese and use a rubber spatula to fold it all together. Feel free to top with a little extra cheese if you’d like, then top with bacon.
Bake on center rack at 350 F for 20 minutes until hot and bubbly.