Pimento cheese macaroni and cheese combines two southern classics into one decadent dish you’ll love. Perfect as a meal on its own or as a side dish, this creamy pasta will be on your menu over and over again.
This is one of those recipes where my southern roots are gonna show big time.
After all, what’s more down home southern than pimento cheese?
Macaroni and cheese made with pimento cheese.
And bacon. Can’t forget to mention that because really doesn’t bacon make everything better?
Let’s just say this mac is *chef’s kiss* perfection.
What is pimento cheese?
If you’re not from the South, you might not know about pimento cheese.
It’s a spread or thick dip made from cheese, pimento and mayo. Pimentos are just a slightly sweet kind of pepper.
We smear the stuff on everything from crackers to crusty hunks of bread.
We’ve even been known to sandwich it between said bread, for a truly magical grilled pimento cheese sandwich experience.
For this truly southern spin on mac and cheese, you’ll need:
- Pimento cheese– Nothing beats homemade Southern Style Pimento Cheese. Trust me- it’s easy and worth it!
- Noodles– Classic elbow macaroni is my noodle of choice here, but you could substitute another short shaped pasta. Whatever pasta you use, cook it according to the directions on the package.
- Butter– Either salted or unsalted.
- Flour– Regular all purpose flour.
- Milk– This is not the time to use low fat milk. Go for whole milk if you can.
- Green pepper– Dice the pepper and remove the seeds.
- Bacon– Cook it up crisp and crumble it.
- Cheddar cheese– Shred the cheddar. Freshly shredded cheddar will melt better than the precut kind but you can sub the precut kind in a pinch.
How to Make
Making this indulgent comfort food isn’t hard!
Start by melting the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
Once the butter has melted, make a roux by whisking in the flour until the flour and butter are a paste-like consistency.
Cook for 60 seconds or until the mixture is smooth and golden to cook out any ‘floury’ taste.
Then, whisk in the milk, a little at a time, stirring constantly until it thickens.
Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the pimento cheese until the cheese has melted and the sauce is smooth.
Next, stir the cooked, drained pasta, diced peppers, and three quarters of the bacon into the sauce until they are evenly incorporated.
Lightly spray a 9×13″ baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
Carefully transfer the macaroni and cheese mixture into the prepared dish and spread it out into an even layer using a spatula.
Then, sprinkle the cheddar cheese evenly out overtop of the macaroni.
Bake the dish at 350° for 15 minutes.
Serve warm with a sprinkle of the remaining 1/4 cup of crumbled bacon for garnish.
What to Serve with Macaroni and Pimento Cheese
This dish is hearty enough to make a meal on its own especially if you serve it with some Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread.
You could also serve it as a side dish to any main that mac and cheese pairs well with.
And don’t forget the holidays!
This would put an excellent southern twist on your Thanksgiving dinner!
Store the leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days.
I don’t recommend reheating in the microwave.
For best results, reheat at 300 until warmed through, adding more cheese on top if desired.
Tips and Tricks
- When you add the milk to the roux, make sure you keep stirring so the sauce isn’t lumpy.
- Don’t have bacon on hand? You could omit it or substitute chopped ham instead.
- Make sure you’re not substitute low fat milk. If you don’t have whole milk on hand, you could use something with more milk fat like half and half or cream.
Other Mac and Cheese Recipes You’ll Love
This pimento cheese macaroni and cheese brings delicious down home flavor to a classic dish. Make it today for a twist everyone will love!
Looking for other mac and cheese recipes? Here are a few of my favorites:
- Mac And Cheese Soup
- Caesar Mac And Cheese with Kale
- Southern Homestyle Mac & Cheese
- Breakfast Mac & Cheese
- Mac & Cheese Donuts
- Buffalo Chicken Mac And Cheese
- Creamy Tomato Soup Macaroni & Cheese
If you’ve tried this PIMENTO CHEESE MACARONI AND CHEESE or any other recipe on the site, let me know in the comment section how it turned out, we love hearing from our readers! You can also follow along with me on PINTEREST, FACEBOOK, and INSTAGRAM to see more amazing recipes and whatever else we’ve got going on!
Pimento Cheese Macaroni & Cheese
- 12 oz pimento cheese roughly 1 1/2 cups
- 1 lb elbow noodles cooked according to package instructions
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/3 cup flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1 large green pepper seeded & finely diced
- 5-6 strips bacon cooked crisp & crumbled
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar
- In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Once melted whisk in the flour until evenly combined. Cook for 60 seconds to cook out any 'floury' taste.
- Whisk in the milk, a little at a time, stirring constantly until the roux's all come together and thickened. Repeat until all the milk's been incorporated.
- Remove the roux from heat, and stir in the pimento cheese until the cheese has melted and the sauce is smooth.
- Stir in the cooked & drained pasta, peppers, and 3/4 of the bacon until they're completely incorporated into the sauce.
- Lightly spray a 9x13" baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Carefully transfer the macaroni & cheese mixture into the prepared dish. Spread it out into an even layer using a spatula.
- Sprinkle the cheddar cheese evenly out overtop of the macaroni.
- Bake the dish at 350° for 15 minutes.
- Serve warm with a sprinkle of the remaining 1/4 cup of crumbled bacon for garnish.