It’s football season and that means every Saturday or Sunday for the next few months (depending on if your loyalty is to college football, the NFL, or both), you’re going to be one of the millions of people who are packing up all of the food and booze that they can and heading down to your local team’s stadium to drink and eat your way into a frenzy before the game starts. That’s right, folks, it’s tailgating season, and we couldn’t be happier.
Week after week of hamburgers and hot dogs can get pretty boring, though, so it’s important to have a variety of recipes that are both easy to make and delicious for when it’s your turn to bring more than just a couple bags of chips. If you’re in charge of the meats for tailgating, you could smoke a brisket like a boss, or if you don’t have hours upon hours to prepare for the tailgate, you could go with a dish that hits all of the important food groups and can be made in the amount of time it takes to chill your first six-pack of the day.
That is where this holy trinity of buffalo chicken, cheese, and carbs come in. A buffalo mac and cheese casserole takes very little time to make, and you’re getting everything you need to ensure that you’re not the fan that ends up falling down the concrete stadium stairs because you’re too drunk. Instead, you’ll be standing, cheering loud and proud because you’ve got a belly full of awesome.
This recipe comes to us from pasta company Three Bridges, which creates pastas, sauces, and pre-prepared meals that are free of preservatives, hormones, and antibiotics (in other words, look for them in the refrigerated section of your grocery store, not the dried pasta aisle).
Using Three Bridges Creamy Cheddar Mac and Cheese Kit, a couple other ingredients, and just thirty minutes of your time, you’ll have something that everyone at the tailgate is going to rave about, even if their team is being pummeled into the ground.
Buffalo Chicken Creamy Cheddar Mac & Cheese Casserole
- 1-12 oz package Three Bridges Creamy Cheddar Mac & Cheese Kit
- 5 cup panko breadcrumbs
- .5 cup milk
- 2 tbsp butter
- 8 oz chicken, cooked and shredded
- 3 oz hot sauce, your favorite
- .25 cup ranch dressing
- 1 tsp celery seed
- 5 cup jack cheese, shredded
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Mix the panko breadcrumbs with the melted butter to coat. Set aside.
- Prepare Three Bridges Creamy Cheddar Mac & Cheese per directions. Add shredded chicken, hot sauce, ranch dressing and celery seed.
- Pour into a small oven safe baking casserole dish.
- Top with the shredded jack cheese then top with the breadcrumb mixture.
- Bake for 10 minutes or until the breadcrumb topping is lightly browned.
- Let cool for 5 minutes. Serve & enjoy!
(Need beer to bring along? Why not pick up some of these India Pale Ales?)