Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese
If you love BBQ pork, then you’re going to love this easy stovetop Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese with smoked cheddar. Great recipe to use up leftover pulled pork or brisket.
If there’s one smell I love, it’s the smell of fire.
I’m not talking about being some crazy arsonist setting fires to buildings. I’m talking about cooking food with fire, whether it’s campfires, grilling, smoking, or just bonfires in general.
I haven’t been around a bonfire in forever, but I remember on those nights, I would wear a hoodie then come home and smell like a bonfire for a few days.
Such a great smell, mainly because so many of my favorite foods are made over an open flame – s’mores (which inspired my S’mores Ice Cream), barbecue ribs, the list goes on.
When Dad and I visited Nashville and Memphis back in 2009, we made sure to add a few barbecue joints to our dinner list; after all, you cannot go to Memphis, home of the largest pork barbecue contest in the world, and not eat barbecue.
Here in Pittsburgh, we may not have a barbecue style named after them like Memphis does, but there are still some great places to buy it.
At my previous apartment about 2 minutes down the road was a little barbecue joint. There were a few tables inside, but you can tell it’s built for either pick up or for their food cart they use for events.
When I saw brisket mac and cheese on the menu, I knew I had to order it. Except it was SO small, I didn’t realize it must have been a side dish and not a full dinner.
I was very disappointed as it only took a few minutes to inhale it.
That was the inspiration for this Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese as I wanted a BIG meal to fill me up.
No skimpy side dish portions here; just a big ol’ bowl of creamy, comforting mac and cheese with pulled pork.
To make dinner quick and easy, I used pre-cooked pulled pork. You can buy it from the grocery store, from your local barbecue restaurant, or use leftovers.
Or you can make your own Pulled Pork for 2.
To play off of the smokiness from the BBQ pork, I used smoked cheddar. You’ll probably have to buy a block of it and shred it yourself, but the flavor is so amazing that you won’t mind.
There’s something about smoked cheese that adds a little extra depth to your food.
Of course you can use regular cheddar if you don’t have smoked, but I highly recommend using smoked cheddar if available.
Ingredients For Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese
To make your pulled pork mac and cheese recipe, gather the following ingredients:
- Elbow macaroni: Elbows are the traditional shape for macaroni and cheese.
- Butter: The fat needed to build your cheese sauce
- Onion and garlic: Aromatics to flavor your sauce
- Flour: Thickens the sauce by making a roux
- Milk: Use whole milk for maximum creaminess
- Smoked cheddar cheese: Can’t make mac and cheese without the cheese! You’ll likely have to grate your own cheese, but it’ll be worth it.
- Salt: Ensures your dinner isn’t bland
- Pulled pork: As much as I love barbecued meats, I rarely make them myself because they take hours of care and patience. That’s why I opted to use premade.
How To Make Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese
To make your BBQ pork mac and cheese, first bring your pasta water to a boil. Once boiling, add a handful of kosher salt then your pasta. Cook until al dente.
While the pasta is cooking, make your cheese sauce. Melt your butter in a large skillet then cook your onion until softened.
Stir in your flour to make a roux then slowly whisk in the milk. Bring to a boil then cook until thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in your cheese until melted.
Add your pulled pork and keep warm.
Once your pasta is done, toss it with the cheese sauce and serve.
What goes with pulled pork mac and cheese?
Your pulled pork mac and cheese recipe isn’t complete without a few side dishes! Serve it with small batch coleslaw found in my BBQ beef sliders recipe, small batch dinner rolls, or easy baked beans from Easy Dinner Ideas.
Looking for something healthy? Serve it with Green Onion Salad.
More Mac and Cheese Recipes
Enjoyed this BBQ pulled pork mac and cheese? Check out my other mac and cheese recipes for two:
- 1/2 pound (8 ounces) uncooked elbow macaroni
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup diced white or yellow onion
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (preferably kosher)
- 1 cup shredded smoked cheddar cheese
- 1 cup cooked barbecue pulled pork, room temperature
- 1 green onion, sliced for garnish
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add a big handful of salt then add the pasta. Cook as directed on the package until al dente, about 9-11 minutes. Drain into a colander.
- While the pasta is cooking, make the sauce. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the onion and a pinch of salt then cook for 5 minutes or until soften. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute.
- Stir in the flour to coat and cook 1 minute. Slowly whisk in the milk then add the salt. Bring to a boil and cook until thickened, about 3-5 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and whisk in the cheese until melted. Taste and adjust for salt if needed.
- Stir in the pulled pork and keep warm. If the sauce cools and thickens too much, stir in more milk to thin it out.
- Once the pasta is done, mix with the sauce. Garnish with green onion.