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Cajun Mac and Cheese

Cajun Mac and Cheese has andouille sausage, bacon, and tons of flavor. This deliciously loaded mac and cheese recipe delivers just the right Cajun kick to this classic dish.

plated mac and cheese with the casserole dish in the background

Shout out to my Cajun seasoning, because when I look at my recipes and take stock – what have I made, or, more importantly, what have I not made, using Cajun flavors seems to be a recurring thing with me.

I’ve never been to Louisiana, but here we are.

So, one thing I loooove to do is made fancy, crazy creative, DELICIOUS macaroni and cheese recipes, and this Cajun Mac and Cheese is right up that alley.

spoon scooping up macaroni and cheese

How is this macaroni and cheese “loaded”?

Loaded usually means bacon, cheese, sour cream, and green onion. Or some variation thereof.

My loaded mac and cheese has:

  • Bacon.
  • Andouille sausage.
  • Two cheeses: sharp cheddar and mozzarella.
  • Incredible flavor from Dijon, Cajun seasoning, sun-dried tomato, green bell pepper, garlic and onion.
  • Topped off with a cheesy crunch fried onion topping.

SO good and such depth of amazing flavor. There ain’t one dull bite to be had.

sauteed andouille sausage in a nonstick skillet

Instructional steps

The steps to make this mac and cheese are essentially the same as making any other macaroni and cheese.

  1. Make a basic white sauce using butter, flour, and milk.
  2. Add all the flavor ingredients and cheeses to finish the cheese sauce.
  3. Add the cooked macaroni.
  4. Top with the crunchy onion topping and bake.

This recipe is completely straight forward. Just assemble your ingredients and knock it out.

chopped cooked bacon on a white cutting board

Can this cheesy mac be made in advance?

Yes. This is a wonderfully creamy cheesy recipe, so it reheats very well in the microwave or in a low temperature oven until heated through.

So you are safe assembling and baking a day in advance.

view of the ingredients in a bowl: cheddar, mozzarella, sun-dried tomato, and green bell pepper

Is this recipe spicy?

No, it is not. I didn’t use so much Cajun seasoning because while I wanted a kick, which we get from the sausage and seasoning blend, I wanted my kids to enjoy it too.

So, if you do want it spicy, just add crushed red pepper flakes. You can add them to the cheese sauce prior to baking, or serve pepper flakes so everyone just sprinkle over to their hearts delight when they eat.

cooked mac in a pyrex bake dish

Last Tips

  • As with all macaroni and cheese recipes, we make a roux, then add milk, then cheese. This recipe is no different, other than the other ingredients we are throwing in.
  • Making a mac and cheese roux happens quickly. Watch it or it will overcook on you.
  • Slowly adding the milk while whisking constantly helps the milk thicken faster and saves time.
  • We do not have to get the cheese completely melted. It is fine to get the cheese sauce off the heat to keep it from thickening too much (and making dry mac and cheese) with much of the cheese still not completely melted. It will finish melting once the hot pasta is added.
  • Macaroni and cheese does not take long to bake. Once assembled, it is pretty much ready, it just need to heat through and blend flavors. But we don’t want to over-bake and end up with dry macaroni and cheese.
top down view of plated casserole, fork on the side of the plate

Want more Cajun-inspired recipes?

side view of plated recipe, casserole is blurred in the background

Cajun Mac and Cheese

Erica
With andouille sausage, bacon, and tons of flavor, this deliciously loaded mac and cheese recipe delivers just the right Cajun kick.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Cajun
Servings 6 people
Calories 530 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 7 oz andouille sausage diced
  • ½ lb bacon cooked and crumbled
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 ½ cups milk
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp Cajun or Creole seasoning blend of choice
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese divided
  • 1 Tbsp dried minced onion
  • ¼ cup sun-dried tomato in oil drained and chopped
  • 1 small green bell pepper seeded and diced fine
  • 8 oz elbows macaroni pasta uncooked
  • ½ cup fried onions crumbled
  • garnish: chopped flat-leaf parsley, crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

Instructions
 

Assemble the ingredients

  • Heat oven to 350°F.
  • Assemble all of the listed ingredients together.
  • Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  • In a medium skillet, saute the sausage until nicely browned.

Make the Cajun cheese sauce

  • Heat the flour and butter to a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, until smooth and bubbly. Reduce heat to medium, and cook 2 minutes, stirring often.
  • To the flour-butter roux, slowly whisk in the milk. Heat over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, just until the mixture is warm and starting to give off a little steam. Reduce heat to low.
  • Whisk in the Dijon mustard, Cajun seasoning, garlic powder, and minced onion. Stir in the mozzarella cheese and 1-1/2 cups of the cheddar cheese (reserve 1/2 cup for the topping).
  • Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the cheeses are melted.
  • Remove from the heat. Add the bell pepper, sun-dried tomato, andouille sausage, and bacon.

Cook the pasta

  • Cook the macaroni elbow in the boiling water to al dente according to package directions. Note that this can be done while making the cheese sauce.
  • Drain and add to the cheese sauce.

Assemble the casserole and bake

  • Pour the cheese sauce and macaroni mixture into a 13×9 bake dish.
  • In a small bowl, combine the crumbled fried onions and remaining cheddar cheese. Sprinkle over the casserole.
  • Bake at 350°F for 15-20 minutes or until heated through, lightly browned on top, and bubbly.
  • Garnish, if desired, and serve.

Notes

This recipe can be made in advance. Simply heat in a low temperature oven until just heated through, or heat individual portions in the microwave.
As written, this recipe has a little kick but is not spicy. To add more spice, top with red pepper flakes for desired heat. I do not recommend adding more Cajun seasoning as most blends contain salt.

Nutrition

Calories: 530kcal (27%)

Calorie count is purely an estimate calculated using an online application to serve as a guide and not to be taken as accurate nutritional information. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Keyword Cajun mac and cheese, loaded mac and cheese
Tried this recipe?Leave a comment below and let me know!

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