Jack Daniel’s Bacon Mac & Cheese

This Jack Daniel’s Bacon Smoky Mac and Cheese has crispy peppered bacon, tons of cheese, plus Jack Daniels whiskey. Make this comfort food recipe tonight!


For the Pasta:

  • 1 lb elbow macaroni
  • Water for boiling
  • Salt for the pasta water

For the Cheese Sauce:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup Jack Daniel’s whiskey
  • 4 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup grated Gruyère cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the Bacon:

  • 6 strips of thick-cut bacon


  • 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
  • Fresh parsley for garnish (optional)


  1. Cook the Pasta:
    • Boil the elbow macaroni in salted water according to package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
  2. Prepare the Bacon:
    • In a skillet, cook the bacon until crisp. Remove and let it drain on paper towels. Once cooled, chop into small pieces.
  3. Make the Cheese Sauce:
    • In a large saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.
    • Whisk in the flour and cook for about 1 minute, stirring constantly.
    • Gradually add the milk and heavy cream, continuing to whisk.
    • Pour in the Jack Daniel’s whiskey and bring the mixture to a gentle simmer. Stir frequently until the sauce thickens.
    • Remove from heat and stir in the shredded cheddar and Gruyère cheese until smooth and creamy. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Combine Macaroni, Sauce, and Bacon:
    • Add the cooked macaroni to the cheese sauce, mixing until the pasta is evenly coated.
    • Gently fold in the chopped bacon.
  5. Prepare the Breadcrumb Topping:
    • In a small bowl, mix together Panko breadcrumbs, melted butter, and smoked paprika if using.
  6. Assemble and Bake:
    • Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
    • Transfer the mac and cheese to a greased baking dish.
    • Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture evenly over the top.
    • Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the top is golden and crispy.
  7. Serve:
    • Let the Mac & Cheese cool for a few minutes before serving.
    • Garnish with chopped fresh parsley if desired.

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