Bacon-Pepper Mac and Cheese
3/9/2015, 2:21 a.m.
- 3 cups uncooked penne pasta (10 oz)
- 1/3 cup butter
- 1 medium red bell pepper, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
- 4 medium green onions, sliced (1/4 cup)
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 2 ¼ cups milk
- 10 slices packaged precooked bacon (from 2.1-oz package), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (4 oz)
- 4 oz Muenster cheese, shredded (1 cup)
- 2 oz Gruyère cheese, shredded (1/2 cup)
- ¼ cup Italian style bread crumbs
- Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 2-quart casserole with cooking spray. Cook and drain pasta as directed on package.
- Meanwhile, in 3-quart saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Reserve 1 tablespoon of the butter in small bowl. Stir bell pepper and onions into butter in saucepan. Increase heat to medium; cook and stir 1 minute. Stir in flour, salt, pepper and mustard. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is bubbly. Increase heat to medium-high. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly, until mixture boils and thickens, about 5 minutes. Gently stir in bacon and pasta.
- Remove from heat; stir in cheeses until melted. Pour into casserole. Stir bread crumbs into melted butter in small bowl. Sprinkle over pasta mixture.
- Bake uncovered 20 to 25 minutes or until edges are bubbly.