Mac and Cheese Recipe That's Baked in a Smoker
Macaroni and cheese is the perhaps one of the most traditional family dishes ever. It goes with so many meals. Add a little touch of summer and BBQ, and now it is time for smoking the mac and cheese. Stick with hickory chips for a mild flavor, and only hit with smoke one time. Generally, this dish is going in with the meats during the last 45 minutes or so after the meat is done smoking. Just add a smaller amount of wet wood chips one time to give the noodles their smokiness. Keep the dish uncovered to allow the cheese noodles to absorb the smoke.
- 1 (16 ounces/1 pound) bag shell noodles, shells best, homemade bowties, or macaroni noodles
- 1 (16 ounces/1 pound) block cheddar cheese, mild, medium, or sharp shredded or block cheese shredded
- 1 (10 1/2 oz) can Campbells cheese soup, condensed Campbells soup
- 1 (10 1/2 oz) can Campbells broccoli cheese soup, condensed Campbells soup
- 1 empty soup can whole milk or 2% milk, fill one empty soup can with milk
- 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon salt or no salt for lower sodium
- 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon pepper
- Sprinkle to 1/4 teaspoon Emerils' Original Essence, optional
- Sprinkle to 1/4 teaspoon celery salt, optional
- 1 full insert hickory wood chips, soak wood chips or dry is fine
Preparing the Dish for the Smoker
- Use a 3 quart glass casserole dish or an aluminum tray. (Smoke will coat the dish, use vinegar and baking soda to remove the film afterwards or dedicate the dish to the smoker.)
- Cook the pasta noodles al dente, or just 4-5 minutes boiling time only (it will cook in the smoker or oven fully) Any longer time boiling and your macaroni noodles will taste overcooked. Any brand of noodles is good. I found the shell noodles are best. You can use regular macaroni noodles, just boil 3-4 minutes or if you use homemade noodles, only boil 3 minutes.
- Spray the dish with non-stick oil spray.
- To improve seasoning the dish, add ingredients 1/3rd at a time so you can add some cheese soup, seasoning, and a little of the shredded cheese each time and mix before adding the next portion. The celery salt is optional, use a small amount of Emeril's Original Essence seasoning. I add a lot of pepper, but seasoning is the way your family eats food. I also use No Salt for lower sodium n this dish. You can use regular salt, I also use some Sea Salt in the boiling water, about 1/2 tsp.
- Add a little kick! Throw in 1/4 to 1/2 cup pepper jack cheese. There is a 3 cheese mix that is even better, already shredded and ready to drop it right in. The smoke and the hot kick are awesome with BBQ! Make sure you have some cottage cheese on the side or vanilla ice cream as a treat after all this good stuff.
Mixing Ingredients and Adding to the Dish to Bake
- Bring a pot of water to boil on high heat. Add noodles and only boil 4-5 minutes. They will cook the rest of the way in smoker.
- In a 1 or 2 quart pot, add the broccoli cheese soup, cheese soup and can of milk. Stir to mix all together. Warm on low to medium heat, do not let it boil.
- Drain the water from the noodles. Run a little cold water over them to keep them from getting sticky.
- Use a 3 Quart tall glass casserol dish or an aluminum disposable square pan. Spray a little non-stick spray inside the dish.
- Pour 1/3 of noodles into the dish, 1/3 of the soup mix and a small amount of shredded cheese. Mix and add some of each of the seasonings.
- Repeat Step 5 two more times and mix everything together. Add more seasoning of salt and pepper if needed. It is cooked enough, you can taste a bit to get it the way you like your mac and cheese.
- Add 1/2 to 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese on the top. Do not cover the dish. Add 1 time, the wood chips to the smoker before adding the dish.
- Bake in electric or gas smoker for 1 hour at 225 degrees (all smokers vary in the real degree inside the smoker, mine is 245 to maintain true 225 inside.
- Cook 1 hour(for softer top)to 2 hours at the most. When it cooks more than an hour and a half, the top portion will crust over a little harder.