Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese

Monday grumble…grumble…grumble! I know! 🙁 Where do the weekends go?

Reminder: My VitaTops Giveaway ends tonight! Don’t forget to enter here! 3 ways to enter, don’t miss out!!

So the recipe I’m featuring today was a simple act of wifely kindness (little does he know, eggplant is on the menu for later this week…). My husband is a sucker for anything buffalo-chicken-y. I butchered the fat content on this recipe BIG time, and it’s still nothing terrific nutritionally-speaking…but a salad accompaniment and you’re good to go! However, it is pretty flippin’ delicious…if I do say so myself. When Mr. Prevention offers to do the dishes and says he’ll eat the leftovers during the week, I know it’s a job well-done. 😉

Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese adapted from Noble Pig

7 5 Tbsp unsalted butter light butter made without partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated oil
Kosher salt
1 pound 12 ounces whole wheat elbow macaroni
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
3 cups shredded rotisserie chicken (or shredded chicken breasts)
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup Frank’s Buffalo Wing Sauce, divided
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons dry mustard
2-1/2 cups fat free half-and-half
1 pound Cabot 50% less fat extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
8 4 ounces low-fat pepper jack cheese, shredded
2/3 cup low fat sour cream
1 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and butter coat a 9 x 13 baking dish with cooking spray.  Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; add the pasta and cook until al dente.  Drain.

Meanwhile, melt 1 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion and celery and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.  Stir in the chicken and garlic and cook 2 minutes, then add 1/2 cup hot sauce and simmer until slightly thickened, about 1 more minute.

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a saucepan over medium heat.  Stir in the flour and mustard with a wooden spoon until smooth.  Whisk in the half-and-half, then add the remaining 1/4 cup hot sauce and stir until thick, about 2 minutes.  Whisk in the cheddar and pepper jack cheeses, then whisk in the sour cream until smooth.

Spread half of the macaroni in the prepared baking dish, then top with the chicken mixture and the remaining macaroni.  Pour the cheese sauce evenly on top.  Put the remaining 2 Tablespoons butter in a microwave safe bowl and microwave until melted.  Stir in the panko, blue cheese and parsley.  Sprinkle over the macaroni.  Bake until bubbly, 30 to 40 minutes.  Let rest 10 minutes before serving.  Drizzle with some wing sauce for color. Yield: 12 large servings

Nutrition Information (per serving): 411 calories; 14.7 g. fat; 73 mg. cholesterol; 861 mg. sodium; 30.6 g. carbohydrate; 3.5 g. fiber; 37 g. protein

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Q&A Anyone??

I received one lonely Q&A question in the past few weeks. We were doing these really regularly with all your awesome questions coming in, and I’d love to get one up sometime this week!! You all help keep me on my toes!

If you have a burning (or just curious!) question, please email it to me at [email protected] ! I’ll accept questions unrelated to nutrition to. Spice things up a bit!

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I’ll leave you with the cutest picture I’ve taken in some time…

If that doesn’t make you smile on this Monday…then I just don’t know what will 😉

Question: What is your all-time, hands down FAVORITE food or meal?

I ask because obviously Mr. Prevention has a “thing” for buffalo chicken anything. Me? KING CRAB!

Ciao for now,

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48 Comments

  1. April 12, 2010 / 6:21 am

    I definitely have a thing for buffalo chicken and think this looks amazing! And 411 calories/serving is no laughing matter for mac and cheese. That is a job well done!

    I also really have a thing for sweet potatoes and butternut squash. Now if I could think of a way to combine these three things…

  2. April 12, 2010 / 7:17 am

    My favourite meal is my mom’s lasagna. I’ll try and think up a question for you šŸ™‚

  3. April 12, 2010 / 7:46 am

    My husband loves buffalo chicken or wings… actually anything with hot sauce. I love the recipe but at times find that if it is too low fat then I just eat 3 times the amount since it does not fill me up.

  4. April 12, 2010 / 8:00 am

    Happy Monday!
    That dish looks awesome! My fiance would totally drool over this šŸ™‚

  5. April 12, 2010 / 8:00 am

    My husband loves anything Buffalo style so this would be great. As for me I find that when I do low fat I eat 3 times as much because it seems so light and does not fill me up.

    http://polwig.com

  6. April 12, 2010 / 8:56 am

    Sounds great. I use rotisserie chicken for many recipes, including soup…so much easier and great flavor.

  7. April 12, 2010 / 9:33 am

    We served this dish for our the evening meal a couple of days ago. Everybody enjoyed it, I will be serving it frequently from now on, it is excellent to find brand new inspiration for dishes also straightforward methods to cook them. Appreciate your coming up with some.

  8. April 12, 2010 / 9:56 am

    My question is…If Lily ever has a pupppies…hmmm can I have one!?!?!?! I love that dog!

  9. IamEatonWright
    April 12, 2010 / 10:01 am

    Nicole- I always impressed with your recipe makeovers and the awesome photos you take! Keep up the good work!

    • April 12, 2010 / 5:00 pm

      Lisa!?!?!? Did you start your blog? I wanna see it šŸ™‚ Oh and I miss you haha!

  10. April 12, 2010 / 10:11 am

    That sounds so good. I try not to make mac and cheese because Iā€™d eat it all, but I know my husband would go crazy over this.

  11. April 12, 2010 / 10:13 am

    What a cute picture. My Husband is a Buffalo chicken addict as well, I don’t blame them. It’s yummy.

    I love anything that has bacon in it. Yum.

  12. April 12, 2010 / 10:32 am

    This recipe sounds like something my kids would love!

  13. April 12, 2010 / 10:45 am

    I love mac and cheese – but I am not the biggest buffalo fan…

    Lobster/clams/scallops would be my favorite…well that and a chocolate chip cookie.

  14. April 12, 2010 / 10:55 am

    That looks so good…yum! Thanks for an awesome recipe!:)

  15. April 12, 2010 / 11:01 am

    Yuuuuuuuuuum This same recipe was featured by Food Network today. I think it’s a sign I need to eat some buffalo chicken and mac n cheese

  16. April 12, 2010 / 11:04 am

    YUM!!!

    I think my favorite meal would be my mom’s marjoram pasta… it isn’t healthy at all… but it reminds me of being a kid and i could eat it every single day!!

  17. April 12, 2010 / 11:19 am

    I love mac & cheese, but the fat content of the regular stuff really scares me away! šŸ™ But recently I found a great recipe that incorporates butternut squash into the sauce and that really helps to boost its nutritional value without compromising any flavour and creaminess at all, it’s great!

  18. April 12, 2010 / 11:46 am

    It must be something about husbands… mine ADORES buffalo sauce, so I know he’d love this mac & cheese!

    It’s so difficult for me to pick a favorite food or dish, but I can narrow it down to a few: sushi, pumpkin/butternut squash ravioli (a local Boston restaurant in the North End makes both, and they are both phenomenal), and creamy oatmeal with lots of toppings – I could eat oatmeal for 3 meals a day!

  19. April 12, 2010 / 12:25 pm

    oh i love the pic of your dog! so cute šŸ™‚
    and i love your recipe-yum!
    gosh what do i love……probably mac and cheese and cupcakes!

  20. April 12, 2010 / 1:22 pm

    I think Jacob would love me if I made that for him. He loved your buffalo chicken dip I made for superbowl.

    My favorite has to be salmon, I could eat it every day.

  21. April 12, 2010 / 1:39 pm

    That mac and cheese sounds AWESOME!!

    I cant think of my favorite meal.

  22. April 12, 2010 / 1:43 pm

    lol OOPS. I totally wasnt finished typing.
    What I meant to say was I cant think of my favorite meal because I love food too much to pick only one!!
    HOWEVER, sandwiches are definitely one of my favorite foods in general.

  23. April 12, 2010 / 2:01 pm

    Your dish looks amazing!

    My favorite meal is my vegetarian lasagna. I’d have it once a week if I wanted to gain weight!

  24. April 12, 2010 / 2:59 pm

    That mac and cheese looks awesome!

    My absolute favorite is anything Thai or Vietnamese. Yum.

  25. April 12, 2010 / 3:06 pm

    Me and your husband would get along famously – I love anything buffalo chickeny too šŸ˜€ And my hubs would be with you on the King Crab!

    I believe I’ll be making a small version of this for my lunch next week with the 75% reduced fat Cabot cheese I have – I just wish it wasn’t so darned expensive!

    Happy Monday!

  26. April 12, 2010 / 3:06 pm

    That looks like the ultimate comfort food!!! Delicious!!

    My favorite meal ever would have to be eggplant parmesan at an italian place here in atlanta. Omg, it is soooooo amazing!!!!!

  27. April 12, 2010 / 3:52 pm

    Wow, what a nice dish, love the combination of buffalo chicken and cheese. My favorite food? There are so many…but cannot resist a nice piece of meat…I know it is not healthy…

  28. April 12, 2010 / 4:58 pm

    This looks great Nicole! My bf would love this as he is a huge buffalo fan. I just purchased some buffalo chicken breast for him today at an Italian grocery store. Its a deli meat though and he is super excited!

  29. April 12, 2010 / 6:58 pm

    That is an adorable pic! šŸ™‚ Oooh, this pasta looks divine, Nicole! I’m a sucker for anything Buffalo-style too. My hands-down favorite food would have to be fresh bread, straight out of the oven.

  30. April 12, 2010 / 7:58 pm

    Great recipe! I am saving it to my Delicious Account.

  31. April 12, 2010 / 8:31 pm

    Thanks for visiting my blog-your comments are appreciated! This recipe looks delicious– Cheese and buffalo sauce are two of my favorite things!

  32. April 12, 2010 / 10:10 pm

    I have a question for you…..

    what is your favorite dessert?
    if you could be on a cooking show which food network star would you be most like?

  33. April 13, 2010 / 3:51 am

    This dish looks so scrumptious!!
    My favourite meal.. is my mum’s homemade mozzarella/basil/sundried tomatoes ravioli. They are too good to be true.

  34. April 13, 2010 / 6:43 am

    Nick is the same way, buffalo chicken pizza, wraps, sandwiches, anything!! For me I would say eggs, I love them, and can’t get enough, but I also love buffalo wings, I’ll admit šŸ™‚

    The mac and cheese looks fantastic. Nick would die if I made this, he would think I was from another planet. I rarely make mad and cheese (since I don’t eat wheat) and for me to make buffalo chicken mac and cheese would be even more crazy!! What can I say? I’m LAZY in the kitchen!

  35. April 16, 2010 / 7:12 am

    This sounds/looks SO so good. I bet my Mr. would enjoy it as well!! I like how you lightened it up significantly too. šŸ™‚

  36. April 16, 2010 / 11:16 pm

    I love how you lightened this up – buffalo chicken mac and cheese sounds so amazing!

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