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Stovetop Mac and Cheese with Bacon and Chicken

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Servings: 6


  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 cups small pasta like small shells or elbow macaroni
  • 12 ounces sharp cheddar cheese grated
  • 4 strips of bacon cooked until crispy and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped


  • In a small bowl, combine the paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, sugar, cayenne pepper, chili powder and corn starch. Set aside.
  • To a dutch oven, add the oil. Heat over medium heat and add the chicken. Brown on all sides, about 4 minutes. It's ok if the chicken isn't cooked through. It will continue to cook as you add the rest of the ingredients. Add the milk, half and half, water, pasta and the spices that you mixed together earlier. Bring the mixture to a boil and then cover. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 10-12 minutes or until pasta is tender and chicken is cooked through.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cheese in 1/2 cup increments until melty.
  • Serve the stovetop mac and cheese garnished with crispy bacon and fresh parsley. Enjoy!