This buffalo chicken mac and cheese is the utmost in cheesy comfort. The already irresistible mac and cheese sauce is combined with shredded chicken and the powerful, rich flavor of buffalo sauce. The result is dangerously delicious and can be made in under an hour.
Why is Buffalo Mac and Cheese a great comfort food recipe?
Buffalo chicken mac and cheese takes the easy to create comfort food and infuses blue cheese into the cheesy combination. The creamy sauce is further enhanced by Frank’s Red Hot, the traditional buffalo wings ingredient.
Add in some shredded chicken and you have yourself the ultimate marriage of flavors, all baked into cheesy perfection. A buttery breadcrumb topping will add some great texture to the casserole comfort food.
You can prepare the mac and cheese sauce in a pot or deep skillet and your main tool will prove to be a whisk. The buffalo mac and cheese can be baked in a casserole dish, a cast iron skillet, or in individual dishes.
You can also substitute gruyere or any nutty hard cheese for the blue cheese if the flavor is too intense. Using chicken that has already been cooked is another way to whip up comfort food recipes like this in no time at all.
- Shredded Chicken
- Whole Milk
- Garlic Powder
- Onion Powder
- Ground Mustard
- Blue Cheese
- Cheddar Cheese
- Mozzarella Cheese
- Sour Cream
- Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
- Cooked Pasta
- Olive Oil
- Parsley for garnish, if desired
🔪How to make Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese (Step-by-Step Instructions)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Add flour to melted butter in a pan.
- Once combined, add milk and whisk until combined.
- Add in the spices and continue to whisk until thickened.
- Add in the sour cream, cheeses, hot sauce, chicken, and pasta. Pour the mixture into a casserole dish.
- For the breadcrumbs: Combine the butter, olive oil, and breadcrumbs in a saucepan until combined.
- Sprinkle the breadcrumb topping over the top and bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
💭Tips & Tricks
- Buying or shredding the cheddar and the mozzarella cheese (in addition to crumbling the blue cheese) will ensure that it will melt properly when added to the buffalo sauce.
- There’s no reason you have to cook an entire chicken for this quick and easy recipe. Buying a rotisserie chicken will work just as well. Just make sure to discard the skin as it will alter the texture of the final product.
- Cook the pasta a minute or two below the recommended cooking time. Doing this will make sure it doesn’t get mushy when baking further in the oven.
How Do You Get Creamy Macaroni and Cheese?
Using mozzarella cheese will guarantee a creamy mac and cheese recipe is created when it is added to the milky béchamel base.
Pairing a creamy mozzarella cheese with a sharp cheddar and a third cheese (like blue cheese in this case) will be just the right combination for a creamy, flavorful mac and cheese.
What Type Of Noodles Are Best For Mac And Cheese?
Small shaped noodles are the best suited noodles for making a buffalo chicken mac and cheese or any variation on mac and cheese. Long noodles don’t work for a dish that is typically scooped out of a casserole dish.
Also, make sure to use noodles with surface area with flavor pockets that will absorb the cheesy goodness. Elbow macaroni is the most classic choice of pasta, but tiny shells or miniature rotini.
Can I Freeze Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese?
Buffalo chicken mac and cheese will freeze very well. One it cools completely, you can freeze individual portions in airtight containers or freezer bags. You can also wrap the entire mac and cheese in plastic wrap and cover tightly with aluminum foil.
The mac and cheese will stay in the freezer for up to two months. If refrigerating, you can store covered for up to three days.
Can I Make Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese With Leftover Chicken?
Yes - either buying a rotisserie chicken or using leftover chicken from another night’s dinner works perfectly for adding to buffalo chicken mac and cheese. You can remove any skin, take the chicken off of the bone if using bone-in chicken, and shred the chicken before using.
Just make sure the chicken isn’t seasoned with a competing set of flavors that won’t mix well with this buffalo mac and cheese.
Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese Recipe
- 2 - 2 ½ cups of shredded chicken
- 4 TBSP unsalted butter
- 4 TBSP all-purpose flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- ½ tsp ground mustard
- 4 oz blue cheese substitute gruyere if preferred, crumbled
- 1 ½ cups cheddar cheese shredded
- 1 ½ cups mozzarella cheese shredded
- ½ cup sour cream
- ½ cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
- 4 cups cooked pasta small shells
- Handful of chopped parsley for garnish if desired
- 2 TBSP unsalted butter
- 1 TBSP olive oil
- 1 cup breadcrumbs
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a pan over medium-high heat, add the butter and whisk until melted.
- Slowly add in the flour while continuing to whisk until they are fully combined.
- 4, Add in the whole milk and whisk until combined. Keep whisking the mixture for 2-3 minutes until it begins to thicken.
- Add in the spices and continue to whisk until the sauce is creamy and thick.
- Lower the heat to medium-low and add in the sour cream and cheeses, followed by the hot sauce, chicken, and pasta. Stir until combined.
- Pour the buffalo chicken mac and cheese mixture into a greased casserole dish.
- For the breadcrumbs: in a medium saucepan, melt the butter and olive oil.
- Add in the breadcrumbs and stir until combined.
- Sprinkle the breadcrumb topping over the buffalo chicken mac and cheese and bake for 20 minutes. You can put the oven on broil for an additional few minutes to make sure the topping is golden brown.
- Sprinkle parsley if desired and allow to cool completely before serving.