This August, Cheetos opened a pop up restaurant in NYC called The Spotted Cheetah, and we were so inspired by the dishes they served! Flamin’ Hot Cheetos are one of the world’s most popular snacks, so we just knew we had to give Flamin’ Hot Mac and Cheetos a try.
This recipe is over the top in all the right ways, with the ooey gooey cheesiness you know and love from classic mac and cheese, and an extra kick of spice from the hot Cheetos. Give this a try, and don’t forget to top it all off with extra Cheetos!
- ¼ cup butter
- ¼ cup flour
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 2 cups white cheddar, shredded
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 pound scooby doo noodles (cavatappi)
- 3 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup panko breadcrumbs
- ¼ cup Flamin’ Hot Cheeto crumbs
- Additional Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, for garnish if desired
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Boil pasta according to box directions cooking to al dente, then drain and set aside until ready to use.
- In a large pot, melt the ¼ cup butter over medium heat. Sprinkle in the flour, whisking and cooking about one minute, until well-incorporated and bubbling lightly. Bring the heat down slightly to medium-low, then add in the milk, heavy cream, salt, pepper, dry mustard, and cayenne pepper. Continue whisking to incorporate, then add cheese, stirring until melted.
- Transfer boiled noodles to pot of cheese sauce, stirring well until noodles are coated. Remove from heat, then transfer cheesy pasta to a 9x13-inch baking dish.
- In a medium pan over medium heat, melt down the 3 tablespoons butter, then sprinkle in the panko breadcrumbs and crumbled Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. Stir and toast crumbs until golden brown and well-incorporated. Sprinkle crumbs evenly in a layer over noodles, then bake 12-15 minutes, or until cheese has melted and top is golden brown.
- Allow to sit 5 minutes, then serve with additional whole Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, if desired. Enjoy!