Sriracha Mac & Cheese


Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

It was always a treat when my mom made her TO-DIE-FOR Macaroni & Cheese when we were growing up. My dad (who was always on some type of crazy diet) would always cave and eat her mac & cheese. I mean…how could you not? It’s pure love!

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

My own child? Not a fan. Doesn’t matter what kind of noodle you make it with, the kid has weird melted cheese issues. Apparently it’s fine on pizza but totally questionable on pasta and in grilled cheese sandwiches. I think we need to get some genetic testing. There seems to be quite an abnormality there.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Fortunately my husband loves Mac & Cheese because Carbs + Cheese= our love language. Add a heavy helping of spicy/creamy sriracha sauce & extra crispy panko bread crumbs? We’ve taken loving to a whole new level. It’s really a shame that Cooper can’t get in on this action. But it’s not like we don’t have our own love language…in the form of waffles.

And we’re off! This recipe comes from the Mac + Cheese Cookbook by my friends Allison & Erin. If you love mac & cheese, you need this cookbook. I’m obsessed! Also, their dessert section is bonkers. Homemade Oreos? Peanut Butter Pie??! YES.

They own Homeroom in Oakland. YOU NEED TO GO.

It all begins with their mac sauce. HELLO, béchamel.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

 

This is what goes into the macaroni & cheese part.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

First we make a roux. Melt butter. Add flour to butter. Cook over medium heat. Roux turns light brown.

This all happens in a heavy bottomed (hehe) pot.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Whole milk gets poured in slowly. We’re whisking! It’s gonna get clumpy for a second. Fear, NOT.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Because things will be nice & creamy in no time. HEAVEN. Now add salt.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

OK!  Now that the mac sauce is done, get your pasta cooking. You want it super al dente!

Mash ginger & butter together.

Add it to the mac sauce & stir in the grated havarti.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Stir. Cheese doesn’t have to be melted fully. Add in your sriracha.

*sidenote*

I call Sriracha, COCK SAUCE. Just look at the bottle. I’m glad a few of you are reading this. HI!!!

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Add in the cooked noodles. We stir!

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Hello creamy deliciousness. Let’s add some green onions in there. When I read the recipes I was like WHAAAAAAT?? One whole cup of green onions? That seemed like a lot. They add a surprising sweetness to the dish!

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Now we add our macaroni & cheese to a casserole dish. I upped the 1/2 cup of panko to 3/4.

“The best part of mac & cheese is the crispy/crunchy breadcrumbs.”- quote by Tracy Shutterbean.

Add that to my Pinterest Board.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

DONE! Those bowls are like FILL US UP, LADY. The spoon is saying, GET ME TO THAT EDGE!

The sriracha bottle is saying, TELL THE NEW GUY TO KEEP HIS TOP CLEAN.  I dunno. Sorry.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Ahhhhhh.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

Spoon it up. Drizzle the top with sriracha.  The small bowl was for Cooper.

But really… it’s just for us parents to split. Parents, you know how it goes.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

You’re gonna love this.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese // shutterbean

It’s just the right amount of spice! Creamy crunchy spice.

Sriracha Mac + Cheese

recipe slightly adapted from the Mac + Cheese Cookbook

serves 4

mac sauce:

  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

for the pasta:

  • 3/4 pound dried elbow pasta
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups grated Havarti
  • 2-3 tablespoons Sriracha sauce, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 cup chopped green onions (both green and white parts)
  • 3/4 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)

to make the mac sauce:

Heat the milk in a pot over medium heat until it just starts to bubble, but is not boiling, 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Heat the butter over medium heat in a separate, heavy bottomed pot. When the butter has just melted, add the flour and whisk constantly until the mixture turns light brown, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat.

Slowly pour the warm milk, about 1 cup at a time, into the butter-flour mixture, whisking constantly. It will get thick when you first add the milk, and thinner as you slowly pour in the entire 3 cups. This is normal.

Once all the milk has been added, set the pot back over medium-high heat, and continue to whisk constantly. In the next 2-3 minutes the sauce should come together and become silk and thick. Use the spoon test to make sure it’s ready. Dip a metal spoon into the sauce-if the sauce coats the spoon and doesn’t slide off like milk, you know it’s ready. Add the salt and stir to combine.

to make the sriracha mac & cheese:

Preheat oven to 400F.

Cook the pasta in salted boiling water until a little less than al dente. Drain, rinse with cold water, and drain the pasta again.

Mash together the ginger and butter in a small bowl until fully combined.

Add the mac sauce, cheese, and ginger butter to a large heavy-bottomed pot and cook over medium heat. Stir until the cheese is barely melted, about 3 minutes. Add the sriracha and the cooked pasta and continue cooking while stirring continuously until the dish is nice and hot, another 5 minutes.  Add the green onions and stir to fully combine.

Pour the mac into a 14-inch casserole pan and sprinkle with panko. Bake until hot and bubbly and the topping is golden, about 20 minutes. Remove  from the oven and drizzle with more sriracha. Spoon into bowls and serve.

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99 Comments

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  • September 23, 2013

    It’s funny, growing up I thought I didn’t like mac and cheese because I’d only had the type out of the box. Then I grew up and had the baked kind and now it is one of my favorite things. If only I’d had THIS kind growing up. I love sriracha so hard.

  • Jessica
    September 23, 2013

    COCK SAUCE!!! AH HA HA HAA!

  • Amy
    September 23, 2013

    I LOVE sriracha – it just goes with EVERYTHING.

    http://www.yummei.com/

  • September 23, 2013

    I freaking LOVED mac and cheese as a kid and can’t imagine a mini human not liking it!! More for you at least, haha. This looks awesome!

  • September 23, 2013

    Lol, HI!! Right back atcha!

  • Jenna
    September 23, 2013

    HI back! Mac & Cheese was my favorite food EVER as a kid. As an adult I only let myself have it a couple of times a year though as I have zero self control when it comes to the mix of carbs & cheese. I happened to make some last year and make some of the kale/coconut salad that’s on your site as a side dish. Seems like a weird mix but it was really good as leftovers today with the kale/coconut thrown over top of the mac & cheese. Bet it would also be amazing with this cock sauce twist! I remember reading that Deb’s (SmittenKitchen) son went through a stage where he didn’t like cheese either. Maybe it’s more of a boy kid thing?

  • September 23, 2013

    Holy crap this looks amazing! I need to buy this book for the Jalepeno one!

  • jenny
    September 23, 2013

    this looks amazing! and I loved “heavy bottomed (hehe).” LOL.

  • September 23, 2013

    Oh dear God, yes.

  • September 23, 2013

    Coming off of a dining experience last night that involved spicy jalapeño margaritas, I love the unexpected use of the Sriracha here. The extra bread crumbs and cheese sauce are just the icing. Happy Monday.

  • September 23, 2013

    I love the ginger! It is like a little hidden gem. What a perfectly balanced recipe. By balanced, I by no means mean healthy. I mean spicy and cheesy perfection!

  • September 23, 2013

    Holy cheesy perfection! We have become huge fans of Sriracha in my home. I used to think we were weird for putting it on more than just Asian cuisine, but now I see we’re perfectly normal! I’ll have to try this recipe.

  • Who doesn’t like sriracha? And more importantly, who doesn’t like a good bowl of mac n’ cheese?

  • September 23, 2013

    Sriracha is known as Cock Sauce in our house too. I just wish you would have named the recipe Cock Sauce Mac & Cheese.

  • September 23, 2013

    That looks utterly delicious! I am a sucker for the “rooster” sauce as we call it my house *blushes*

  • September 23, 2013

    Um YUM!! How have I never thought to add sriracha to mac and cheese — brilliant!

  • Michelle
    September 23, 2013

    So. This is happening.
    Cock sauce, hee hee.

  • September 23, 2013

    I am adding this book to my wish list almost exclusively to get to that Breakfast Mac recipe.

  • September 23, 2013

    Cannot wait to make this!

    ALSO lol re. Cock Sauce. :P

  • September 23, 2013

    Wow, why haven’t I ever thought of this?! That’s why you’re the genius!

  • September 23, 2013

    Love this! I had something similar from a food truck recently. It was super tasty.

  • September 23, 2013

    This looks delicious. I have always relied on box macaroni and cheese but this might be the first from scratch recipe I try!

  • September 23, 2013

    Oh NOOO. (Oh YESSS!) I cannot wait to try this. Love the addition of ginger butter – brilliant move. And cock sauce is the name we use around here as well… just not around my 8 year old stepkid. Hah!

  • September 23, 2013

    EVERYTHING about this is good and right.

  • Amanda Barkey
    September 23, 2013

    I seriously read this post and after every section my eyes just got bigger and bigger.. ginger butter?! sriracha?! havarti?! scallions?! MIND BLOWN! this is like Mac and Cheese from the FUTURE! I am loving this… also, cock sauce. :)

  • September 23, 2013

    YES, YES, YES! I love mac & cheese so much!!

  • dana828
    September 23, 2013

    I just ordered that cookbook yesterday as a surprise for my 12-yr-old daughter, who would eat mac + cheese for every meal forever if she could. I’m most excited for the jalapeño popper one!

  • September 23, 2013

    This looks amazing! Why have I never added sriracha sauce to mac & cheese before? :)

  • September 23, 2013

    YES. I’m so curious about the ginger! This looks fantastic. Homeroom’s goat cheese mac and cheese is still the best Mac n’ Cheese I’ve ever had and their homemade oreos are where it’s at!

  • September 23, 2013

    I’m down with that, Cooper! There was a time as a kid I wouldn’t touch melted cheese, especially on pizza. Of course I also went through the no-chocolate-chip-cookies phase, the no-tomato-sauce-foods (except pizza) phase, and the no-chocolate-at-all phase. Keep trying all these tasty foods though, dude, so you don’t miss out when you’re older. = )

  • September 23, 2013

    Sounds delish! Although, the addition of ginger seems a little odd. Does it go well with the Sirarcha for an Asian infusion deal? For some reason cheese + ginger weirds me out. Please explain!

    • Tracy
      September 23, 2013

      It’s not super potent. With the addition of ginger & green onions it adds a nice sweetness.

  • September 23, 2013

    You won’t ever catch me turning down a bowl of homemade mac ‘n cheese. EVER. And kudos for upping the panko bread crumbs!

  • September 23, 2013

    We didn’t do mac & cheese in my house growing up – I guess it’s not as popular in Australia as it is in the US. However, I think when I eventually have my own little family, that mac & cheese might become a frequent visitor to our table. As for now, I only have to share with the boyfriend, oh what a shame – more for me…

  • Lorin
    September 23, 2013

    What does the boy eat at homeroom if he doesn’t like Mac n cheese? That’s all they have!

    • Tracy
      September 23, 2013

      He ate all the add-ins for their salads. Broccoli, chicken & bacon. And of course…dessert. Thank God for their sides!

  • Lizzie
    September 23, 2013

    I’m going to the store right now. Bye.

    • Lizzie
      September 23, 2013

      Yep. That’s pretty damn tasty!

  • Hiep
    September 23, 2013

    Sriracha is extremely garlicky and you can taste it for days similar to eating raw onions. So for those who are sensitive to garlic or considerate to their spouse I would use Frank’s Red Hot or Tapatio.

    • Tracy
      September 23, 2013

      Really? It doesn’t seem garlicky to me.

  • September 23, 2013

    YES!!!!

  • Ericko
    September 23, 2013

    nice recipe what can i use instead of havarti cheese and bechamel? are there any substitues?

    • Tracy
      September 23, 2013

      what kind of subs are you looking for? dairy free?

      • Ericko
        September 29, 2013

        just other substitute for those cheeses, i think i cant get them in my area

        • Tracy
          September 29, 2013

          Try white cheddar!

  • September 23, 2013

    Boyfriend is obsessed with sriracha. He puts it on EVERYthing. I just hollered at him from the other room, “what do the words ‘sriracha mac and cheese’ do for you?” Needless to say, he liked that combo of words. Haha.

  • September 24, 2013

    Mac and cheese by itself is worth it, but with Sriracha you’ve just over did it. I’d eat the whole pot to myself!

  • September 24, 2013

    OMG! That looks divine! Anything with sriracha has me drooling :D

  • September 24, 2013

    I love the creativity! Ginger, green onions, hot sauce. Almost an Asian twist. Pretty sure the ginger cuts the richness. I’m gonna use cheddar cos I have absolutely no idea where to get havarti. Cooper won’t have it? I’ll have his share. Lol. This is going to be so good cold!

    • Tracy
      September 24, 2013

      It is so good cold! And FRIED.

  • September 24, 2013

    This is kind of embarrassing, but I have yet to make a stellar mac & cheese from scratch. I can’t seem to get it right! Yours looks UH-mazing! Also, I have yet to try Sriracha. *blushes*

    • Tracy
      September 24, 2013

      YOU CAN DO IT!!!

  • September 24, 2013

    I’ve actually made this with the Sriracha cookbook! I feel like you would love that book too. I lived in Berkeley for 5 years and as soon as Homeroom opened up, that was my JAM. I’m actually heading over to the East Bay today too…hrm….

  • September 24, 2013

    YUM! I’m a big fan of putting hot sauce in mac & cheese, so this isn’t a new idea for me, but I’m bookmarking your recipe to make sometime soon!

  • September 25, 2013

    And green onions. Love this recipe!

  • Emily
    September 25, 2013

    Yum, I want to make this for dinner this Friday! Tracy, do you remember how much Havarti you bought in order to get 2 cups grated? I’m assuming I should be able to find a nice block at Trader Joe’s. Thanks!

  • Michele
    September 27, 2013

    We call Sriracha “Hot Cock”

  • Sean
    September 29, 2013

    This will be the third recipe I try out! and I’m really looking forward to it.

  • September 29, 2013

    I’ve been excited about reading this post ever since it first showed up a million years ago. I’m so behind. I need an intervention. It’s all that I dreamed it would be. I can’t wait to try it!

    • Tracy
      September 29, 2013

      glad you’re here!

  • October 1, 2013

    God this looks good! I’ll definitely have to try this!

  • Mel
    October 8, 2013

    ohmahgawd. very, VERY excited to give this a try! any rec’s on veggie add-ins? broccoli? bell pepper?

    • Tracy
      October 8, 2013

      ooooh! do broccoli!!

  • October 9, 2013

    Wow. This recipe will certainly fulfill two of my addictions: mac n cheese and sri racha!

  • Elle
    October 9, 2013

    I would like to add some protein! Any recommendations on what type of meat would blend in well with this mac and cheese (maybe chorizo or some other sausage?)?

    • Tracy
      October 9, 2013

      Chorizo or sausage would be great!

  • stacy
    October 9, 2013

    Tracy! My 4 yr old girl has the same cheese issues- never heard of another kid besides Cooper who turns down mac and cheese! She literally shudders when she eats cheese, UNLESS its on pizza. She also loves hard parmesan cut off the block but that’s it- no string cheese, no cheddar (!), no mac and cheese, nada. Makes me crazy, as a gal who could live on cheese alone if I would be allowed!

    • Tracy
      October 9, 2013

      WHOA!!! You basically described my kid. He won’t eat string cheese either but LOOOOOOVES parmesan chopped up.

  • October 12, 2013

    I’m cooking for 8 tomorrow one of which is my brother-in-law who is a die hard Mac n Cheese fan. He moved from L.A to the UK and can’t get a decent one anywhere over here apparently so i’m making THIS! Awesome!

  • Candi
    October 12, 2013

    My husband made this last week and, I swear, it was one of the best things he’s ever made! When I told him that he laughed and said it was because he actually followed the recipe exactly. It’s definitely on the repeat list!

  • Ragan
    October 18, 2013

    I saw this on a food program last night and immediately googled the recipe. Made it tonight. It was fantastic! Thank you for sharing. Next time I will add some blue cheese to the panka for a little more kick.

  • October 29, 2013

    We make a version of mac ‘n’ cheese that uses Dijon mustard in the bechamel and then chopped onion, crushed garlic and uncooked baby spinach mixed into the pasta before baking. It’s an all-family favourite, but I’ve a feeling it’s about to get ditched in favour of this……YUM!

  • Jenny
    November 10, 2013

    Hi Tracy, is there some way to decrease the amount of butter in this? I love make and cheese but want to make it healthier. Thanks!

    • Tracy
      November 10, 2013

      I think that the roux is kind of important to this specific recipe. You might want to try some other ways to lighten it- like nonfat milk and less cheese?

  • Sue
    January 8, 2014

    How are we going to make this once there’s no more Sriracha?

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/suneal-bedi/who-owns-the-air-sriracha_b_4409724.html

  • March 5, 2014

    I can’t wait to make this!! I’m going to way un-do the juice cleanse I did today when I eat this for dinner tomorrow!

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