Carbonara Mac ‘n Cheese Souffle – the end all of mac and cheese. It’s fluffy, puffy, yummy, gooey, cheesy and creamy pasta with crispy pancetta. Need I say more?
Sigh. Carbonara Mac ‘n Cheese Souffle. One can say this recipe is a treat, it’s really really good. Might even make you cry it’s so good. Not that I’d want you to cry, but it would be tears of joy. I wish you were all my neighbours (sorry for the Canadian spelling there, but je suis Canadienne) so that I can share this souffle with you all, because there’s plenty here for a bunch of us. And I’m in the holiday spirit here, been watching Christmas movies all month so far, so I’m really in a giving mood. Christmas movies and The Walking Dead. Yep that’s been my life for the past couple weeks.
But you might wonder why I call it a souffle. It’s perfectly simple, my dears. It has eggs, the eggs are separated and the whites are whisked to stiff peaks, and added to the cheese sauce, making this a fluffy, puffy, yummy, gooey, cheesy pasta. Yep, that about describes it.
While you may look at this recipe and think there’s a bit of work involved, it’s still a dish you can have ready in about an hour, and it will be so worth all your effort. It’s so delectable, you can serve this as a side dish, or with a salad, but I simply served this on its own and just savored it. Perfect for lunch or dinner.
Trust me it’s not your run-of-the-mill mac ‘n cheese, it’s so much better, one might say superior in fact. But I’ll leave that up to you to decide.
So next time you feel like nothing will make you feel better than a big bowl of mac and cheese, I highly highly recommend this souffle. Just you wait, you’ll thank me as usual.
If you guys love this recipe, and most importantly make it yourselves, please let us know. Take a picture and tag it #jocooks on Instagram so we can see it. I always love to see what you guys come up with!
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Carbonara Mac 'n Cheese Souffle
- 12 oz mini pasta shells
- 4 oz pancetta chopped
- 3 eggs divided
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk I used 3.25%
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 1/2 cups Gruyere cheese shredded
- 1 1/2 cups white cheddar cheese shredded
- 1 tbsp fresh parsley chopped
- Preheat oven to 400 F degrees. Butter or grease a 9x13 inch casserole dish.
- Cook pasta according to package instructions.
- Add the pancetta to a saucepan and cook until it browns. Remove the pancetta from pan and place over paper towels to soak up some of the fat.
- Separate the eggs and whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form. In another bowl whisk the egg yolks and set aside.
- Add the butter to the saucepan and melt. Add the minced garlic and cook until it starts foaming and gets aromatic, about a minute. Sprinkle the flour over the garlic and stir. Whisk in the milk and cook until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a wooden spoon.
- Season the sauce with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
- Add half the gruyere and half the cheddar cheese to the sauce and continue whisking until the cheese melts.
- Temper the egg yolks by adding a ladle of the sauce at a time to the egg yolks and whisking them, add about 3 ladles of sauce altogether. You want to do this to avoid the eggs from scrambling up when you add them to the cheese sauce.
- Stir in the egg yolk mixture back into the cheese sauce. Remove from heat. Fold the egg whites into the cheese sauce.
- Start layering the casserole by adding half the pasta shells to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle half the pancetta over the pasta, then add half the cheese sauce. Sprinkle half of the remaining gruyere and white cheddar over then add the rest of the pasta. Repeat with the remaining pancetta, sauce, and cheese. Finally top with the chopped parsley and place the dish in the oven.
- Bake for 20 minutes until golden and puffed. If you want it more golden you can turn the broiler on and broil the souffle for 2 or 3 minutes.
Recipe inspired from Rachael Ray
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