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Smoked Mac And Cheese

You'll love this smoked mac and cheese recipe! It's got only 4 ingredients, macaroni, cheese, red pepper flakes, and salt/pepper. It's easy, cheesy, and delicious.

Years ago, Kevy and I were at a stand-up comedy show and I'll never forget the host moaning about being on a diet. How when you eat an apple your taste buds throw out a subdued "woo. an apple."

But man, when you take a bite of mac and cheese your taste buds throw a party "OHHH BABY! MAC AND CHEEEEESE"

That's what happens when you eat this mac n cheese. It's all OHHH BABY!!

This recipe is dedicated to yours, mine, and our taste buds.

Smoked mac and cheese on a serving spoon.

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Tips + tricks

No. 1 --> Hand shred that cheese. I know. It's a pain in the ass, but hand-shredded cheese is 1000 times better than the pre-shredded, starch coated cheese in this recipe. You owe it to yourself to get that grater out!

No. 2 --> Sprinkle those red pepper flakes. Gingerly. You want to taste the smoke and the cheese, and not breathe straight fire, unless that's your thing. The heat adds a layer of depth to the dish, and even my dad who hates spicy food can't stop devouring this dish.

No. 3 --> Serve this with a smoked brisket. Trust me.

Close up view of the hand shredded cheese.

Ingredients

You'll think I'm lying, but I'm not. This recipe is so dead-simple.

  • Macaroni
  • Shredded cheese
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Salt/pepper

This recipe is our absolute favourite smoked mac and cheese recipe. We've tried several over the past year and a bit, and this one is the winner. It's got smokey notes, heat, and just that incredible melty cheese that you can't get in a mac and cheese recipe that's got a roux or cream base.

Which Cheese?

The world is your oyster on this one!

Cheddar - the quintessential classic, it tastes like comfort food on max volume. Smooth and melty!

Monterey Jack - buttery and mild, this cheese is perfect for mac and cheese. Velvety when melted.

Gouda - smooth and creamy with a mild flavour. Perfect for gooey mac and cheese.

Mozzarella - mild and slightly salty with stretch for days! Adds to the consistency of this mac and cheese.

Use whatever you want, make a blend, use them all. I'd love to hear in the comments below what you decided to use!

Melted cheesy mac and cheese being stirred.

How to make

  1. Cook the macaroni noodles till al dente, then rinse and drain. Set them aside to dry, they don't need to be dry, but they need to be not dripping wet.
  2. Fire up the smoker according to the manufacturer's directions. We usually use a competition blend when smoking things like Mac and Cheese. Set the temp to 225f.
  3. Shred the cheese, the cheese is flexible, I like to use cheddar or a mix of cheddar and mozzarella.
  4. Combine 2 1/2 cups of cheese and the noodles in a large bowl. Add the salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes at this point.
  5. Transfer the mac and cheese to your baking dish. Top with the remaining cheese.
  6. Smoke that dish of deliciousness at 225f, uncovered, for 45 minutes without stirring.
  7. Serve hot!

Make ahead

Heck yes! This dish is so flexible and perfect for entertaining or bringing to a potluck.

Precook the noodles, then assemble the dish as you would be baking it, and then cover with cling wrap and throw that bad boy in the fridge until you're ready to smoke it!

A dish of mac and cheese in the smoker.

There's nothing better than the smell of wood smoke. I love pulling into the driveway and smelling that Kevy's got the Traeger running! This awesome backyard cooker transitioned us from a non-smoking family to unabashed smokers - with no desire to ever quit. You can get a Timberline from Williams Sonoma, or an Ironwood from Amazon.

Love smoked mac and cheese? I'm sure you'll love these:

A dish of mac and cheese fresh out of the smoker.

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📖 Printable Recipe

Smoked mac and cheese on a serving spoon.
Yield: 6 cups

Smoked Mac And Cheese Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

A delightfully smokey, cheesy, gooey, smoked mac and cheese recipe. You'll love that it's simple, has 4 ingredients, and comes together in a flash.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups macaroni noodles, uncooked
  • 3 cups shredded cheese, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoons red pepper flakes (adjust to your taste)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Cook the macaroni noodles until slightly al dente.
  2. Rinse and strain the noodles to keep them from sticking together, and spread them in your 8x8 casserole dish. Set aside for 10 or so minutes to dry.
  3. Start your smoker according to manufacturers' directions, and set to 225f.
  4. Meanwhile, shred the cheese.
  5. Mix 2 1/2 cups of cheese, salt and pepper, and the red pepper flakes with the noodles, toss to coat completely. It may be easier to do this in a bowl than the baking dish.
  6. Top the macaroni with the remaining cheese.
  7. Cook the macaroni uncovered in your smoker at 225f for 45 minutes.
  8. Remove from the smoker and serve hot.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 293Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 56mgSodium: 419mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 15g

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Traeger smoked mac and cheese pinterest graphic.

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