My husband was raised on mac n' cheese so I wanted to come up with a creative way to re-introduce him to this past standby. On my side of the family, macaroni and cheese was an American treat for us kids. So either way I had to whip up something fast and hearty that we both could enjoy.
Last night I created a recipe that will probably be inducted into our family's Food-Fast menu. We like to call it "Spicy Mac n' Cheese." The key to this recipe is using Niman Ranch's Chipotle Cheddar Uncured Sausage. I purchased this from Whole Foods. One package costs around $5.00 depending on your town. I love packaged/deli meats but I get migraines that are potentially triggered by nitrates found in packaged meats. So anytime I can find a "no nitrates added" 12 oz pack of sausages plus chipotle spice, I will try it. It is confirmed: Niman's Chipotle Cheddar Sausage Rules.
This is how we did it:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
12 oz package of Chipotle Cheddar Uncured Sausage
1 package of your favorite Mac n' Cheese
1/2 C of bread crumbs
1 pot for the mac n' cheese
1 pan/skillet for the sausage
Pair of tongs
1 2-quart square (or close to size) baking dish
- Slice the sausages according to your preference. We sliced them thin.
- Heat skillet or pan on med-high. When the pan is hot, place your sliced sausages in the pan. Use tongs to continuously toss the meat around so it avoids getting burned. You want the flavors in the meat to get juicy and the texture to caramelize. Once that is done, set aside.
- Cook your mac n' cheese according to the instructions on the box. Once you've finished making your mac n' cheese, combine the sausages into the mac n' cheese mixture.
- In the baking dish, spray your non-stick cooking spray and pour your mixture into the pan. Sprinkle 1/2 C of bread crumbs on top and bake for 20-23 minutes. If you want more crispiness on top bake longer but keep an eye on it. I would hate to have anything this good burn into oblivion.
Enjoy the your Spicy Mac n' Cheese!