BBQ Pulled Pork Mac & Cheese with Smoky Breadcrumbs & Butter Lettuce Salad
Craft

BBQ Pulled Pork Mac & Cheese

with Smoky Breadcrumbs & Butter Lettuce Salad

40 MIN
+$6.99/serving 4 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

WHY WE LOVE THIS DISH
You'll make a decadent, comforting mac and cheese with creamy béchamel, smoky gouda, and melty monterey jack, then top it with tender pulled pork—simmered in a tangy barbecue sauce with a dash of hot sauce for a kick of heat. You'll finish it off with breadcrumbs toasted in tomato and chipotle butter for more smoky flavor.
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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    1280 Cals (est.)
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fresh
ingredients
BBQ Pulled Pork Mac & Cheese with Smoky Breadcrumbs & Butter Lettuce Salad
Title
  • 20 oz Cooked Pulled Pork
  • ¾ lb Cavatappi Pasta
  • 2 heads Butter Lettuce
  • ½ lb Grape Tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsps Hot Sauce
  • 1 oz Pickled Peppadew Peppers
  • 4 oz Smoked Gouda Cheese
  • 8 oz Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese
  • ½ cup Cream
  • 3 Tbsps Ketchup
  • 4 Scallions
  • ½ cup Barbecue Sauce
  • ⅔ cup Béchamel Sauce
  • ½ cup Panko Breadcrumbs
  • 2 oz Tomato Chipotle Flavored Butter
  • 4 tsps Honey
  • 2 Tbsps Apple Cider Vinegar
time-saving
tips & techniques
Prepare the ingredients & make the dressing
1 Prepare the ingredients & make the dressing

Fill a large pot 3/4 of the way up with salted water; cover and heat to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Thinly slice the scallions, separating the white bottoms and hollow green tops. Grate the gouda on the large side of a box grater. Cut off and discard the root ends of the lettuce; tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces. Halve the tomatoes; place in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper; stir to coat. Roughly chop the peppers. In a bowl, combine the barbecue sauce, ketchup, 1/4 cup of water, and as much of the hot sauce as you'd like, depending on how spicy you'd like the dish to be. In a separate, large bowl, combine the vinegar, honey, sliced white bottoms of the scallions, and a drizzle of olive oil; season with salt and pepper.

Toast the breadcrumbs
2 Toast the breadcrumbs

In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat the butter on medium-high until melted. Add the breadcrumbs; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes, or until toasted. Transfer to a bowl. Wipe out the pan.

Cook the pasta
3 Cook the pasta

Meanwhile, add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook, stirring occasionally, 7 to 9 minutes, or until al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Turn off the heat. Reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly. Reserving the pot, transfer the pasta to a bowl.

Make the BBQ pulled pork
4 Make the BBQ pulled pork
Meanwhile, in the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the pulled pork. Cook, stirring occasionally, 1 to 2 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the barbecue sauce mixture (carefully, as the liquid may splatter); season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally and breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the pork is heated through and the liquid is slightly thickened. Turn off the heat.
Make the mac & cheese
5 Make the mac & cheese

In the reserved pot, combine the béchamel, cream (shaking the packet before opening), and reserved pasta cooking water; season with salt and pepper. Cook on medium, whisking frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until combined and heated through. While whisking, working in batches, add the grated gouda and monterey jack; season with salt and pepper. Cook, whisking constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until thoroughly combined and the cheese is melted. Add the cooked pasta. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the pasta is coated and the sauce is thickened. Turn off the heat. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired.

Make the salad & serve your dish
6 Make the salad & serve your dish

To the bowl of dressing, add the torn lettuce and seasoned tomatoes; season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Serve the mac and cheese topped with the BBQ pulled pork, toasted breadcrumbs, and sliced green tops of the scallions. Serve the salad on the side. Garnish the salad with the chopped peppers. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

Prepare the ingredients & make the dressing
1 Prepare the ingredients & make the dressing

Fill a large pot 3/4 of the way up with salted water; cover and heat to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Thinly slice the scallions, separating the white bottoms and hollow green tops. Grate the gouda on the large side of a box grater. Cut off and discard the root ends of the lettuce; tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces. Halve the tomatoes; place in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper; stir to coat. Roughly chop the peppers. In a bowl, combine the barbecue sauce, ketchup, 1/4 cup of water, and as much of the hot sauce as you'd like, depending on how spicy you'd like the dish to be. In a separate, large bowl, combine the vinegar, honey, sliced white bottoms of the scallions, and a drizzle of olive oil; season with salt and pepper.

2 Toast the breadcrumbs

In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat the butter on medium-high until melted. Add the breadcrumbs; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes, or until toasted. Transfer to a bowl. Wipe out the pan.

Toast the breadcrumbs
Cook the pasta
3 Cook the pasta

Meanwhile, add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook, stirring occasionally, 7 to 9 minutes, or until al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Turn off the heat. Reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly. Reserving the pot, transfer the pasta to a bowl.

4 Make the BBQ pulled pork
Meanwhile, in the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the pulled pork. Cook, stirring occasionally, 1 to 2 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the barbecue sauce mixture (carefully, as the liquid may splatter); season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally and breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the pork is heated through and the liquid is slightly thickened. Turn off the heat.
Make the BBQ pulled pork
Make the mac & cheese
5 Make the mac & cheese

In the reserved pot, combine the béchamel, cream (shaking the packet before opening), and reserved pasta cooking water; season with salt and pepper. Cook on medium, whisking frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until combined and heated through. While whisking, working in batches, add the grated gouda and monterey jack; season with salt and pepper. Cook, whisking constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until thoroughly combined and the cheese is melted. Add the cooked pasta. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the pasta is coated and the sauce is thickened. Turn off the heat. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired.

6 Make the salad & serve your dish

To the bowl of dressing, add the torn lettuce and seasoned tomatoes; season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Serve the mac and cheese topped with the BBQ pulled pork, toasted breadcrumbs, and sliced green tops of the scallions. Serve the salad on the side. Garnish the salad with the chopped peppers. Enjoy!

Make the salad & serve your dish
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