Decadent Shrimp and Bacon Mac and Cheese



I created this recipe for my husband. He was convinced he hated mac and cheese. I knew his weaknesses though - cheese, shrimp, bacon, jalapenos. I put these together to make an amazing decadent, dinner party-worthy mac and cheese. He was convinced and is an annual holiday dish that he specifically requests.

★★★★★ 1 vote
20 Min
30 Min

Blue Ribbon Recipe

Notes from the Test Kitchen:
This recipe is proof that a good mix of cheeses makes a decadent dish. Add bacon and shrimp to the mix and you have a dish everyone wants seconds (or thirds) of. It's great just the way it is, but if you want to add a bit more bacon and shrimp. I am sure no one will argue with you!


2-1/2 tsp
salt, divided
1 lb
dry shell shaped pasta
5 Tbsp
unsalted butter, divided
1 c
medium cheddar cheese, shredded
1 c
extra sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded
1 c
monterey jack cheese, shredded
2 tsp
fresh garlic, peeled and minced
4 Tbsp
all purpose flour
2 c
whole milk
2 c
heavy cream
1/2 tsp
black pepper
1 c
gruyere cheese, grated
1/2 c
bacon, cooked and chopped
jalepeno pepper, chopped
8 oz
jumbo shrimp, shelled, de-veined and chopped
1/2 c
fresh bread crumbs
1/2 c
parmesan cheese, grated

How to Make Decadent Shrimp and Bacon Mac and Cheese


  • 1Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • 2Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil over high heat; add 1 teaspoon salt and the dry pasta. Return to a boil and cook 6 to 8 minutes, or until al dente. Drain in a colander, return pasta to the pot and stir in 1 tablespoon unsalted butter. Toss in the medium Cheddar, Monterey Jack, and Sharp Cheddar cheeses, and set aside.
  • 3To make a sauce, add 4 tablespoons butter and garlic to a 2-quart saucepan and heat over medium heat, 1 to 2 minutes, or until butter is melted and garlic is softened. Add flour and stir continuously, using a whisk, to combine. Continue to cook over a medium heat and gradually whisk in the milk and cream. Stir continuously to prevent scorching; cook 6 to 8 minutes, or until starting to thicken. Remove from heat, and stir in 1-1/2 teaspoon salt, black pepper, and Gruyere cheese.
  • 4Pour sauce over the pasta, add the bacon, jalapeno and shrimp and stir until well combined.Pour the pasta mixture into the dish.
  • 5Toss breadcrumbs together with Parmesan cheese and sprinkle over pasta. Bake in pre-heated oven until top is golden, about 30 minutes.

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About Decadent Shrimp and Bacon Mac and Cheese