Good Morning AZ: NACHO Mama's Mac N Cheese

October 2, 2017

 

It's a sMACk down of cheesey goodness on Good Morning Arizona!  I'm squaring off against Scott Pasmore in celebration of the Mac N Cheese Fest here in Scottsdale on October 7!

 

Scott is bringing his PLAIN JANE mac n cheese against my NACHO Mama's Mac N Cheese!  It's up to the judges to crown the winner, but I think this dish is a WINNER!

 

Nacho Mama's Mac N Cheese

 

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 30 minutes / Servings: 6-8

 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 lb. macaroni elbows

  • 1 lb. Open Nature Australian Grass-Fed ground beef

  • 1 1/2 tbsp. McCormick taco seasoning

  • 2 cans Juanita's Nacho Cheese Sauce, medium heat (15 oz.)

  • 1 cup half & half

  • 16 oz. Mexican shredded cheese blend (reserve about 1/2 cup for garnish)

  • 1 medium tomato, diced

  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro

  • 2 large, chopped green onions

  • 2 tbsp. diced jalapeños (canned or fresh)

  • 6 corn tortillas

  • 1 cup vegetable oil

  • 1 tsp. kosher salt

 

Steps:

  1. Using a large knife or pizza cutter, slice the tortillas into 1/2 " wide by 2" long strips.  Heat the oil on medium heat in a medium saucepan.  Fry the tortilla strips in batches, until golden brown.  Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and transfer to a dish that's lined with a paper towel.  Sprinkle with salt as soon as they come out of the oil.  Set aside until ready to use.

  2. Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil.  Add the macaroni elbows, boil for about 7 minutes until al dente, drain and set aside.

  3. Heat a large skillet to high heat. Add the grass-fed beef and season with the taco seasoning. Cook on high heat for 7-10 minutes, breaking it up as it browns and cooks through.  Remove from heat and set aside until ready to use.

  4. In a medium saucepan, add the nacho cheese sauce, half & half and shredded cheese.  Heat on medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sauce is smooth, creamy and warm.

  5. Add the macaroni to a very large mixing bowl.  Stir in the cheese sauce and the cooked ground beef until combined.

  6. Transfer to a large serving bowl and top with additional cheese, chopped tomatoes, green onions, cilantro and diced jalapeños. Garnish with the fried tortilla strips. Serve immediately.

 

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