Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Spicy Pepper Jack Mac and Cheese


This Spicy Pepper Jack Mac and Cheese is bursting with flavor from hot peppers and sausage. A simple recipe ready in just 20 minutes this is sure to become a go-to meal. Munchkin pulls out a box of mac and cheese every time I ask her to help prepare dinner.  It always makes me think of my mom.

I have such fond memories of my childhood. Growing up I had 2 amazing loving parents that worked hard to make sure that we were always fed and had a roof over our heads. And also a houseful of kids, which always kept things interesting.

Now that I am a mom, looking back I have no clue how they managed so well with 5 kids. Perhaps lists and organization was partly responsible. For many years my mom had a weekly meal plan and I can still remember what we ate every day of the week.

We did not eat out much, she always prepared a homemade dinner. A woman before her time, she was a semi-homemade cook. Every Wednesday mac and cheese was on the menu. It was something the whole family loved and it was easy enough to make and get everyone fed before church on Wednesday nights.

My mom loved to take a box of mac and jazz it up. Our favorite was Mom's famous mac and cheese with beef and onions.Truth be told it is kind of comfort food to pull out a box of mac now. It takes me back to fond memories of my childhood and I love coming up with fun ways to jazz up a box of mac and cheese.

This mac and cheese definitely brings me back home. An incredible box of Horizon Organic Mac and Cheese blended with pepper jack cheese, sauteed jalapenos and hot smoked sausage to create a spectacular dinner in just 20 minutes.

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With love from our simple kitchen to yours. 


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Spicy Pepper Jack Mac and Cheese

2 (6 ounce) boxes Horizon Organic Pasta Shells & White Cheddar Cheese
1 cup 2% milk
1/2 cup unsalted butter
8 ounces pepper jack cheese
1  (14 ounce) package hot smoked sausage
4-8 jalapenos (to taste, less for mild and more for hot)

Bring an 8 quart covered pot 1/2 filled with water to a boil over high heat. Once it boils, add macaroni. Reduce heat to medium high and cook uncovered to al dente (has a bite to it), about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile warm a large 12” skillet over medium-high heat. Slice sausage into coins and add to skillet, cook until browned then flip and cook the other side until lightly browned. Remove from skillet and place on a plate. Set aside.

While the sausage is cooking dice jalapenos. Remove seeds and veins for the least heat, add them in for an extra kick. 

Add diced jalapenos to the sausage drippings and sauté until softened, 3-5 minutes. Remove sautéed jalapenos from pan with a slotted spoon and place on the plate.

Add butter, milk and cheese packet to drained macaroni. Crumble in pepper jack cheese. Stir until combined. Add jalapenos and sausage. 

Serve and enjoy!
Recipe developed by Donna Elick - The Slow Roasted Italian
Copyright ©2015 The Slow Roasted Italian – All rights reserved.

This conversation is sponsored by Horizon. The opinions and text are all mine.


  1. This sounds delicious! You say to add seasoning packet but I don't see it in the ingredients list. Pinning to try!

    1. Hi Kim !! The packets she is referring to are the cheese sauce packets that are in the boxes of the mac and cheese. :) I'm going to try this soon too !!! :D


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