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Cozy Soup Recipes to Get You Through the Winter

Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese

3 Reviews

Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese ohsweetbasil.com

I’m not sure what has happened to macaroni and cheese over the years but it’s definitely gone from a dorky, lame, kids food to a gourmet experiment and I’m totally all about playing around with flavors which is probably why this grown up macaroni and cheese is totally delicious in my opinion, and why I couldn’t resist making a roasted red pepper macaroni and cheese. There’s nothing that shouts dairy like a good macaroni and cheese so at least one of my Utah Dairy Council Posts had to include it.

Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese ohsweetbasil.com

Macaroni  and cheese is macaroni and cheese. No bacon, no lobster, certainly no avocados, but definitely cheddar cheese. That’s the classic. And I love it. Everyone needs a good classic macaroni and cheese recipe. Our Grandma Carol is famous in our family for her Southern Macaroni and Cheese, but even that I think is different than a classic mac. In fact, I’m such a connoisseur of mac that I divide it out into categories.

Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese ohsweetbasil.com

You’ve got your classic macaroni and cheese which should be creamy, cheesy and should never have any mixins. Then there’s the southern macaroni and cheese which should always have an elbow pasta and totally is more about the cheese than the creamy factor. Then there’s the baked macaroni and cheese which I happen to adore, this one totally needs the golden, buttery bread crumbs or panko on top and can include small mixins like little bits of bacon or peppers.

Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese ohsweetbasil.com

Oh, don’t worry I’m totally not done. Then we have our gourmet macaroni and cheese where different flavors of cheeses, consistencies, and pastas are used and last but certainly not least there’s the macaroni and cheese pasta dishes. I just don’t know that I can truly call this a straight mac and cheese because these are the ones where the roasted red peppers or avocados come into play. It’s almost more of a cheesy sauce than a macaroni and cheese.

Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese ohsweetbasil.com

Did I miss any categories? Those are the ones that I think of. My kids are actually opinionated about their macaroni and cheese as well, if it’s Kraft it has to be a shape like Arthur or Scooby Doo, otherwise it’s all about Back to Nature Bugs. This particular macaroni and cheese pasta they loved. Like, really loved. The shells hold in extra sauce which is always a fantastic little surprise when you bite into it, and the sauce is seriously so creamy with a hint of that full roasted pepper taste that adds a little something without overpowering the dish.

So I’m curious, are you a purist, a gourmet gal, or like me where you like a little bit of everything depending on your mood. And have you found your go to recipe?

Can Macaroni and Cheese Sit Out Overnight?

Macaroni and cheese should be discarded if left for more than 2 hours at room temperature.

Bacteria can grow at temperatures above 40 degrees F.

Can Macaroni and Cheese Be Made In Advance?

Macaroni and cheese can be made ahead of time and placed in a baking dish.

It should be cooled completely, covered and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before baking.

Are Red Peppers Hot?

Because the capsaicin level is higher in red peppers than in green peppers, red peppers are hotter than green.

More MACARONI RECIPES You’re Going to Love:

Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese

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Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese ohsweetbasil.com-2

Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese

5 from 3 votes
Prep Time: 8 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 23 minutes
Servings: 8
this grown up macaroni and cheese is totally delicious


  • 1 lb pasta 16 ounces, small shell
  • 3 red bell peppers roasted, I buy the jarred ones but you could roast your own
  • 1/2 Cup butter unsalted
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1/2 Cup flour
  • 1 Cup milk
  • 1 Cup heavy cream
  • 1 Cup cheddar cheese Medium, shredded fine
  • 1 Cup cheddar cheese Mild, or sharp for more of a bite, shredded fine
  • 1 pinch nutmeg
  • 1 1 /4 Teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 Teaspoon pepper


  • In a large pot add water halfway up and add 1-2 Teaspoons Kosher salt (the water should taste slightly salty)
  • Heat over high heat until boiling and add the pasta, cooking per package instructions.
  • Set aside.
  • In a blender puree the roasted red peppers until smooth, set aside.
  • In a separate pot, over medium heat add the butter and cook until melted.
  • Add the garlic and saute for 20-30 seconds and then whisk in the flour.
  • Continue to whisk for 30 seconds or until a nutty aroma fills the air.
  • Whisk in the roasted red pepper until it's all mixed together and then continue to whisk as you slowly pour in the milk and cream.
  • Once the mixture is smooth add the salt, pepper, nutmeg and cheeses.
  • Whisk until all of the cheese is incorporated and spoon the pasta into the mixture, adding a tablespoon or two of pasta water if needed.
  • Serve immediately.


Shredding the cheese with the extra small holes on your grater will produce a creamier sauce.
Macaroni and cheese can be made ahead of time and placed in a baking dish.
It should be cooled completely, covered and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before baking.
Nutrition Facts
Roasted Red Pepper Macaroni and Cheese
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 591 Calories from Fat 306
% Daily Value*
Fat 34g52%
Saturated Fat 21g131%
Cholesterol 104mg35%
Sodium 888mg39%
Potassium 319mg9%
Carbohydrates 54g18%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 17g34%
Vitamin A 2522IU50%
Vitamin C 57mg69%
Calcium 276mg28%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


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Cozy Soup Recipes to Get You Through the Winter

About the authors

carrian feik cheney oh sweet basil

Cade and Carrian have three children and love to spend time together whether it’s vacationing or snuggled up on the couch for a good movie.

And this family especially loves to eat.

They love everything from the keep you fit and healthy to the get out your sweat pants indulgent and everything in between.

But most of all, they love the memories made, shared and treasured and it’s all thanks to a meal shared together with loved ones.

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Recipe Rating


  • Well, this was really good! I had bought a 16 oz. jar of roasted red peppers, but they were cut up, so I had no idea how many three were and used the entire jar, which turned out to be perfect. Although I did add a bit of pasta water, the sauce was still pretty thick, but since it was mac and cheese and not just a pasta dish, we thought that was fine. I used four garlic cloves instead of one for more flavor, and pipette, which is a great little pasta for dishes with sauce. A good mac and cheese recipe that I’m sure I’ll be making again!

    • Reply
    • Thank you so much Helen!! I always appreciate your feedback so much!

      • Reply
  • Fabulous, my family devoured it. I had some ajvar in the fridge so substituted that for the canned roast peppers.

    • Reply
    • Yum! Sounds delicious! Thank you so much for leaving a comment!

      • Reply
  • This was pretty great. I replaced cheddar with smoked Gouda and added 2 tbsp of parsley and it was fantastic. Thanks for posting this!

    • Reply
    • Oh my goodness, the smoked Gouda!! YUM!!

      • Reply
  • Do you drain the roasted red peppers of the juice before you blend? Or do you just pour the entire contents of the jar into the blender?

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  • I love your descriptions of the different types of mac and cheese! I’m a baked m&c girl myself. This recipe looks delicious!

    • Reply
  • My mouth is watering just thinking about having a bowl of this 🙂 I love this idea!!

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  • Just when I begin to think that mac & cheese can’t get any better. 🙂 I love this version with the roasted red peppers. Totally divine. Must try.

    • Reply
  • You totally nailed the mac n’ cheese family. If I could add one, it might “meat and mac” b/c here in WI, people get REALLY into their pulled pork on mac n cheese…and even bologna. Don’t ask–I didn’t grow up here 😉
    PS. Great minds think alike! I have a “baked” mac I’ll be sharing tomorrow. Glad I know how to classify it now 🙂

    • Reply
  • You’re my hero. What a great way to include some more veggies in a comfort food. 😀 Mmm!

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  • I heart roasted red peppers. And you too ; ) Duh ha!

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  • Yum! I love mac and cheese, and have never thought of adding roasted red peppers!

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    • hi, could you tell me how i can print these receipes. i pin it but it doesn’t show the recipe. i would greatly appreciate it. joan

      • Reply
  • This looks awesome! Love the idea of just adding in one flavor twist, but still keeping it mostly classic. Cheers!!

    • Reply
  • I’ll take any kind of mac and cheese to be honest! Although I am partial to fun mix ins and flavors! Love the roasted red pepper in this!!!

    • Reply
  • I just bought a brand new jar of roasted peppers and wasn’t sure what I was going to do with them (I just thought they were pretty)… I’m pretty sure this is a sign that this needs to happen. 🙂

    • Reply
  • This looks like my kind of Mac and cheese! Thanks for sharing.

  • Looks so creamy and delicious! Love your new profile pic!

    • Reply
  • I am always game for a big bowl of mac and cheese and adding in roasted red peppers is just genius!

    • Reply
  • Yummy! I know this is delicious!

    • Reply
  • This looks perfect!! Personally, I don’t discriminate against ANY kind of mac and cheese — all are welcomed. 🙂

    • Reply
  • Yum! I love just about any kind of mac and cheese. This one looks so creamy and delicious. And I’m loving the new head shot! So pretty! 🙂

    • Reply
  • I know what I am making for dinner tonight!!

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  • I love that you divided mac and cheese into categories. 🙂 But it’s true! I’m a big fan of the classic stuff but throwing in other flavors, like with this one, is super yummy too!

    • Reply
  • Nothing like a big bowl of creamy mac and cheese! Love the addition of roasted red peppers!

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  • I love using shells in pasta! My favorite part of the WHOLE thing is that they hold a little extra cheese sauce! So good when you bite into them. I want some now!!

    • Reply
  • I love playing with mac and cheese. There are so many great additions to this classic comfort food!

    • Reply
  • This looks beyond words delicious.

    • Reply
  • Wow wow wow. This looks SO good!!

    • Reply
    • Thanks Aggie! I hope you all are well!

      • Reply
  • Gourmet mac is the best. This looks amazing; I love the roasted peppers. Pinned.

    • Reply
    • Thanks Jennie!

      • Reply
  • I’m craving this like it’s nobodies business!! YUM!

    • Reply
    • If I can satisfy a craving for you I’m a happy camper. haha

      • Reply
  • This looks awesome! I love roasted red peppers!

    • Reply

Cozy Soup Recipes to Get You Through the Winter