When I was first starting out in the world of food, I was on a radio show here in NYC.
One of the first segments I did was on a hole-in-the-wall diner known for all sorts of crazy-delicious concoctions—one of the concoctions being mac and cheese pancakes.
They made theirs a bit differently than I make mine.
But with both versions, you get the tangy cheese and salty bacon swimming through the pancake, which is obviously a very good thing.
I’m basically taking a box of mac and cheese and adding it to a pancake batter.
Not exactly my healthiest meal ever, but I couldn’t resist recreating those diner mac and cheese pancakes.
Thank you for coming on this Hack Your Mac journey with me this week!
My purpose in reinventing boxed mac and cheese was to show you that you don’t always have to make everything from scratch for it to be delicious.
In real life we take shortcuts, and in real life sometimes we just need to have mac and cheese pancakes for dinner.
I mean, we just need to. 😉
Boxed Mac + Cheese Pancakes
makes: Twelve 3- to 4-inch pancakes
- One 14-ounce box of macaroni and cheese (with liquid cheese packet)
- 4 bacon strips (about 2 to 3 ounces or ¼ cup), some reserved for a garnish
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup coarsely chopped scallions, more for a garnish
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (4 ounces), more for a garnish
- 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
- Place a medium pot of salted water over high heat for cooking the macaroni. When the water boils, add the macaroni and cook according to the package directions; drain when finished. Stir in the cheese packet, then set aside.
- While the macaroni cooks, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook until crisp—6 to 7 minutes, turning once. Transfer the bacon to a paper towel to drain, then crumble it into small pieces.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, milk, baking powder, and salt until they are fully combined. Then fold in the cooked macaroni along with the scallions, cheddar, and crumbled bacon.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat, then add the butter and allow it to melt. Scoop about ⅓ cup of the macaroni and cheese mixture into the skillet and cook until both sides of the “pancake” are dark golden brown—3 to 5 minutes per side.
- To serve, garnish with scallions, cheddar cheese, and crumbled bacon.