Buffalo Spicy Mac

There's no better superbowl fare than a nice hot bowl of macaroni & cheese embellished with buffalo-sauced chicken pieces and a myriad of delicious cheeses. 

Gluten Free Buffalo Chicken Spicy Mac
Serves 4-6 as a main dish

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
½ cup Frank’s Red Hot (or your favorite hot wing sauce)
12 oz dry gluten-free elbows
4 ribs celery, diced
2 medium carrots, chopped into 1/4 inch cubes
1 medium yellow onion, diced
3 large cloves garlic, minced
5 T butter
1/4 cup flour
¼ - ½ tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp smoked sweet paprika
Salt and pepper (to taste)
3 cups milk
2 cups Monterey jack cheese (we used a locally made buffalo jack for added zip)
4 oz Neufchatel (or cream) cheese)
½ cup blue veined cheese (we like gorgonzola)
2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese (for the topping)

Place the chicken breasts in a shallow pan with about 1 cup of water. Bring water to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover pan, and poach chicken breasts for 12-15 minutes, or until cooked to an internal temperature of 160ºF.

Cube cooked chicken and immediately toss with ½ cup of hot sauce.

Preheat oven to 375ºF.
In a large sauce pan melt one tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Add the onions and give them a head start by allowing them to cook for 3-5 minutes. When the onions are nearly translucent, add the carrots. Cook for 2-3 minutes before adding the celery and the garlic. The goal here is to completely cook the onion, get the carrots to a crisp-tender state, and cook the celery just slightly (it should still retain some crunch).

While the vegetables are cooking, bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil and stir in a heaping tablespoon of kosher salt. Boil the macaroni noodles for 6-7 minutes, or until they’re just slightly underdone and a bit firm or toothy in the center. Rinse the pasta with cool water to halt the cooking process. Combine the cooked macaroni and sautéed vegetables in a large bowl and set aside.

Stir your ¼ cup flour together with cayenne, cumin, smoked paprika, and a liberal dose of black pepper. In a large sauce pan (you can definitely use the same one in which you cooked the veg), melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. As soon as the butter is melted add the flour and spices and stir briskly together. Let this cook for a minute or two until it starts to bubble, then start pouring in the milk. Whisk constantly while pouring in the milk, being sure to incorporate all the floury bits.

Turn the heat down to low and let the mixture cook for 8-12 minutes, whisking regularly to prevent the bottom from scorching and the top from making a skin. When the sauce is thick enough to form a nice coating on the back of your spoon it is ready for the cheese.

Whisk the Neufchatel, Monterey jack, and blue cheese into the béchamel a handful at a time, only adding more cheese when the previous addition is smooth and combined. Take a taste of the sauce to check the seasoning. Season the sauce with salt to taste. If you feel that a bit more heat wouldn’t hurt, add a pinch or two of additional cayenne.

Stir the sauce in with the vegetables and macaroni. When the macaroni is well coated (it should look slightly soupy) and the vegetables are evenly dispersed, stir in the chicken and all accumulated juices.

Butter a 9”x13” baking dish. Spoon the macaroni mixture into the casserole dish and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the dish is deliciously oozy around the edges.

Inspired by Choosy Beggars Pub Night Buffalo Wing Macaroni & Cheese
Get the full post Over at Burp!


Trish said...

Gosh this looks good! Is Frank's GF? Cool.....its a favorite here in my household. Still trying to watch the GF content in things even tho the son has been tested and is not intolerant. STill....I am learning so much. This looks truly great....and spelt, you can get spelt elbows?

Unknown said...


m3 ds said...

I made this tonight. This is so yummy and easy! I'll make this again for sure!!!
I bookmark this site and will visit it again to learn more recipes.

Peter said...

I made this for the Super Bowl this year and it was delicious! I do have to say that I still prefer your Buffalo Chicken Dip.