I made a big ole batch of fire-eater chicken the other day. It has a really nice kick to it. Besides sandwiches and other great uses for the chicken, I made this insanely good fire-eater chicken mac-and-cheese. It’s based on a buffalo chicken mac-and-cheese recipe, so you know that it’s great. And you don’t have to use fire-eater chicken, any roasted (or rotisserie) chicken will do, but I highly recommend the kicked-up flavor of the fire-eater version.
This fire-eater chicken mac-and-cheese is creamy, like it should be. And crunchy, thanks to the celery and panko breadcrumbs. And it has a kick to it. Just like I like.
Fire-Eater Chicken Mac-and-Cheese
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter divided
- Kosher salt
- 1 pound elbow macaroni
- 1 small onion finely chopped
- 2 stalks celery finely chopped
- 3 cups fire-eater chicken shredded or chopped , or substitute rotisserie chicken
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 3/4 cup hot sauce or Buffalo wing sauce, divided
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons dry mustard
- 2 1/2 cups half-and-half
- 1 pound extra sharp cheddar cheese cut into 1-inch cubes
- 8 ounces pepper jack cheese shredded (about 2 cups)
- 2/3 cup sour cream
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup blue cheese crumbled
- 2 tablespoons parsley chopped
- Preheat your oven to 350 F.
- Salt a large pot of water and cook the macaroni until al denta, about 7 minutes. Drain well.
- Spray a 9″ x 13″ baking dish with non-stick spray.
- Melt 3 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium heat and add the celery and onion. Cook until soft, 5 minutes.
- Add the chicken and garlic and cook 2 more minutes.
- Add 1/2 cup of the hot or wing sauce and stir. Simmer until the mixture thickens slightly.
- In another small skillet or saucepan, melt 2 more tablespoons of the butter.
- Whisk in the flour and mustard until smooth.
- Slow pour in the half-and-half while whisking continuously.
- Whisk in the remaining hot or wing sauce and simmer until the sauce starts to thicken.
- Remove from heat and stir in the cheeses and sour cream until the cheese melts and the mixture is smooth.
- Pour half of the macaroni into the baking dish and spread out evenly.
- Top with the chicken mixture.
- Add the remaining macaroni.
- Pour the cheese mixture over the top and spread out evenly.
- In a small saucepan, melt the remaining butter. Add the panko, blue cheese and parsley. Stir and pour evenly over the top of the macaroni mixture.
- Bake 30-40 minutes or until bubbly hot.
- Let rest 10-15 minutes before slicing and serving.
Nutritional values are approximate.