Smoked Gouda Mac and Cheese with Fried Chicken

When I was in Utah last weekend I went to Spark restaurant & lounge. The whole dining experience was great, but I especially loved the fried chicken with smoked gouda mac and cheese. The pasta was irrisistably creamy, had such a strong, delicious flavor in the cheese sauce, and had bits of bacon in it too. The chicken on top tasted great paired with the mac and cheese. I decided to make a copy-cat at home, referencing other mac and cheese recipes, and came up with this. It was soooo good! Even if you haven't been to Spark, try this, you will love it.

Smoked Gouda Mac and Cheese with Fried Chicken

1 lb curly pasta shapes {I used cavatappi}
6 Tbs butter
3 green onions, sliced
6 Tbs flour
4 cups milk {I used 2%}
salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 cups smoked gouda cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups pepper jack cheese, shredded
8 strips bacon, cooked and chopped
fried chicken strips {I use frozen Tyson brand from Costco}

1. Preheat the oven and bake chicken according to package directions {usually bakes for around 20 minutes, perfect timing for the rest of your meal}.

2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions. When pasta is finished cooking, drain and return to pot.

3. Cook bacon until crispy in frying pan, then remove to paper towel lined plate to cool before chopping roughly into 1/2 inch pieces.

4. Once you get the first three steps started, you can make the sauce while they are all cooking. Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat. Saute green onion in butter for a minute, until onion just begins to cook. Add flour and whisk constantly until it forms a nice paste. Add milk and whisk vigorously to combine with flour mixture. Continue to cook over medium heat, whisking occasionally to avoid scalding. After a few minutes the sauce will thicken. Once it thickens, season with salt and pepper to taste.

5. Set aside sauce until pasta is drained and returned to pot. Pour sauce over pasta abd stir to coat all noodles with sauce. Add shredded cheese and stir to combine; the cheese will melt into the sauce, creating a creamy, smooth cheese sauce. Stir in the chopped bacon.

6. Serve pasta with chicken on top. Serves 6-8.


  1. I must try this mac 'n cheese! "My favorite's gouda!" Name that movie...
    Anywho, Spark is one of the few places I haven't been to in the Provo/Orem area...maybe I will try it one of these days. I hear they have good lunch specials.

  2. I don't know the movie, every time I think of Gouda it reminds me of Mr. Feeny on an episode of Boy Meets World. "Mmmm... love that gouda..."

  3. I love mac and cheese so much! Thanks for sharing the recipe.
    Brad Fallon

  4. Okay.... I just fell in love with your cooking blog here. LOVE LOVE LOVE!

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  6. I was slightly hungry before seeing this and now I'm starving. Why must I be at work and too far away from my kitchen to fix this now!? Might be a good thing though, I don't think I could stop at one serving.

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