Smoky Chicken Mac'n Cheese

If you’d prefer to have chunks of chicken stirred into the macaroni, cut them into ½-inch pieces before cooking.

Prep Time 
Cook Time 
Total Time 


8 ounces uncooked whole wheat or brown rice pasta (fusilli, penne, macaroni)
4 slices thick-cut applewood smoked bacon, sliced crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces
2 to 3 (14 ounces) Just BARE® Hand-Trimmed Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 cups low-fat milk
8 ounces (2 cups) shredded smoked gruyère, cheddar, gouda, or provolone cheese
Chopped fresh parsley to taste


Cook the pasta according to package directions; drain well.

Cook the bacon in a large deep skillet over medium-high heat until crisp; remove bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside. Drain fat from the pan, reserving 1 tablespoon fat.

Season the chicken with smoked paprika, oregano, salt and pepper. Sauté the chicken in the bacon fat for about 8 minutes or until no longer pink in center and nicely browned. Set aside.

Heat oil in the skillet over medium heat; sauté onion and garlic for about 3 minutes or until tender. Stir in the flour until well combined; stir in the tomato paste. Pour in milk; cook and stir for 5 minutes or until thickened and bubbly. Stir in the cheese and cook for 3 minutes or until the melted and pasta is well coated.

Spoon the cooked pasta into the cheese sauce; stir until well coated. Spoon into a casserole serving dish and top with sliced chicken, sprinkled with the bacon and parsley. Or serve in individual bowls. topped with the chicken, bacon, and parsley.

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Cooking Method 

Raising Goodness ®

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