Bacon, Kale And Tomato Mac And Cheese

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  • Casserole
  • 5 slices bacon
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • teaspoon pepper
  • 3 cups milk
  • 2 cups shredded white sharp Cheddar cheese 8 oz
  • cups uncooked elbow macaroni 6 oz
  • 1 cup finely chopped fresh kale or spinach stems removed (about 7 oz)
  • 1 can 14.5 oz fire-roasted diced tomatoes, drained
  • Topping
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • ½ cup plain panko crispy bread crumbs


  • Heat oven to 375°F.
  • Spray 2-quart casserole with cooking spray.
  • Arrange bacon between sheets of microwavable paper towels on microwavable dinner plate.
  • Microwave on High 3 to 4 minutes or until bacon is crisp.
  • Cool; crumble.
  • In 3-quart saucepan, melt ¼ cup butter over low heat.
  • Stir in flour, mustard, salt and pepper.
  • Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth and bubbly.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Gradually stir in milk.
  • Heat to boiling over medium heat, stirring constantly; boil 1 minute.
  • Stir in cheese, ½ cup at a time, until melted.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Stir in uncooked macaroni.
  • Gently stir in kale, tomatoes and bacon; pour into casserole.
  • Bake uncovered 15 minutes; stir.
  • (If any macaroni is sticking up above surface, press down with back of spoon.
  • ) Meanwhile, in small microwavable bowl, microwave 1 tablespoon butter uncovered on High about 40 seconds or until melted.
  • Stir in bread crumbs.
  • Sprinkle topping over macaroni mixture.
  • Bake 12 to 17 minutes longer or until macaroni is tender when pierced with fork and topping is light golden brown.
  • Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Notes / Tips / Wine Advice:

We prefer hand-shredded cheese for this recipe because the coating on pre-shredded cheese causes the baked casserole sauce to not be quite as smooth — but in a time crunch, pre-shredded cheese will be just fine.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 540 kcal