Bacon Mac & Cheese Skillet Recipe

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Hot for Food Vegan Comfort Classics 101 Recipes to Feed Your FaceIt’s the best mac & cheese ever! Says anyone who’s tried our classic version. Just a couple of tweaks and some smoky shiitake bacon thrown into the mix and we have ourselves a real winner! Anyone who knows me (in real life or online) knows that my obsession for mac & cheese is fierce, unrelenting, and maybe even a bit of a problem. I dream about swimming in it! Hands down, I’m like a sommelier for vegan mac & cheese. So trust me on this one—don’t mess with it. You’ll be tempted to, ’cause I know you. But don’t. Once you pour that cheese sauce in the skillet, it will be near overflowing. You literally COULD swim in the skillet there’s that much cheese sauce. Don’t omit any amount of it, unless you like disappointment.

  • Yield: 4 to 6 Servings
  • Preparation Time: 45 Minutes
  • Cooking Time: 45 Minutes


  • 3 cups elbow macaroni
  • ¼ cup bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon The Parm
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Mushroom Bacon
Mac & Cheese Sauce
  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked in hot water for 20 minutes
  • 2¼ cups unsweetened nondairy milk
  • 0.33 cup vegetable oil
  • 0.33 cup nutritional yeast
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1½ tablespoons miso paste
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons arrowroot or tapioca flour
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground white pepper or black pepper
How to Make It
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. To cook the pasta, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until al dente. Drain, but do not rinse.
  3. To prepare the topping, combine the bread crumbs, The Parm, herbs, and salt in a small bowl.
  4. To make the sauce, drain and rinse the cashews. Add to a high-powered blender with the remaining ingredients and blend on high until very smooth.
  5. In a 9-inch cast-iron skillet or baking dish, stir the pasta and sauce together until the macaroni is well coated. What looks like an excess amount of sauce will thicken during baking!
  6. Sprinkle three-fourths of the bread crumb mixture evenly on top. Sprinkle the bacon pieces liberally on top. Press them slightly into the bread crumb layer but keep them still visible. Top with the remaining bread crumbs.
  7. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes.
  8. Remove the foil and bake on the top rack of the oven for 10 minutes until the top is golden brown and the sides are bubbling slightly. Depending on your oven and the distribution of heat, you might want to set the skillet under the broiler for 5 minutes to get the top crispier instead of continuing to bake at 350°F. Serve immediately. When reheating leftovers you may want to add more nondairy milk to get it creamy once again.

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