Mariachi Mac & Cheese

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Tips For The Best Mariachi Mac & Cheese

This is the same great Beecher’s Mac & Cheese recipe taken to a new level, with the spice of chilies and the addition of vegetables. Feel free to experiment with leftover cheese for new flavor combinations!

How To Make Mariachi Mac & Cheese

Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce come in 7-ounce cans and can be found at most grocery stores. The peppers are very soft and become a pulp when finely minced. They are also spicy, so to reduce the spice of the mac and cheese, add less chipotle. Store leftover chipotle peppers in the refrigerator.

Serve & Store

Let cool for 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy hot. Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for 2 to 3 days.


Note: This dish can be assembled before baking and then frozen up to 3 months ahead – just be sure to use a freezer-to-oven pan and increase the baking time by 30 minutes.

Recipe

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Serves: 2 to 4

Ingredients

8 ounces penne

2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter

2½ tablespoons all-purpose flour

1½ cups milk

9 ounces Flagship cheese, grated (2¼ cups)  

1 ounce Just Jack cheese, grated (1/4 cup)

2 ½ teaspoons finely minced chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (about 1 pepper; see note)

1 4-ounce can diced green chiles, rinsed, or 3 roasted Anaheim chilies

¾ teaspoon garlic powder

1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

½ medium red onion, diced

1 cup cauliflower florets

½ medium bell pepper, diced

½ cup fresh or frozen corn kernels

¼ teaspoon paprika

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter or oil an 8-inch baking dish.
  2. Cook the penne 2 minutes less than package directions. (It will finish cooking in the oven.) Rinse the pasta in cold water and set aside.
  3. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan oven medium heat, melt the butter and whisk in the flour. Continue whisking and cook for two minutes. Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly. Cook until the sauce thickens, about 8 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat. Add three-quarters both cheeses, chipotle pepper, green chilies, garlic powder, and salt. Stir until the cheese is melted. Set aside.
  4. In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, cauliflower, and bell pepper. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the onion is just beginning to brown. Remove from the heat and add the vegetables to the cheese sauce along with the corn. Fold the sauce into the cooked pasta. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with the remaining Cheddar cheese and paprika.
  5. Bake, uncovered, for 35 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly.

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