Smoked Gouda Mac and Cheese with Sun Dried Tomatoes and Spinach

A few weeks ago, I received an email asking if I wanted to join a group of bloggers (about 50) to post mac and cheese recipes they find on the Internet. Same day, same time, random recipes. The only rule: the recipe had to be found on a blog.

Remember when I told you there were approx 40 THOUSAND food blogs out there?  I think almost every single one of those blogs has a mac and cheese post. How to find a special recipe? One worthy of a mac and cheese challenge? I turned to my cheese drawer, and my good friend Google. In the fridge,  I found some Baby Gouda (still in the wax) that Brookie brought me back from Henri Willig while in Amsterdam.  Also, some white cheddar,  yellow cheddar, and about 7 other types of cheese. Cause you never want to be without at least 10 varieties of cheese in your fridge, right? Just in case. Anyway.  I had eaten some of this special Gouda months ago, but was saving this round for a special occasion. Btw, if you are thinking whaaa? Didn't Brooke go to Europe last year? Answer, yes. But hard, low moisture cheese wrapped in wax stays good indefinitely, so no worries.  I googled Gouda Mac and Cheese and came up with a great little recipe from A Cozy Kitchen .
Result: move over children, this mac and cheese is for grownups.

Smoked Gouda Mac and Cheese with Sun Dried Tomatoes and Spinach
adapted from Chase Livengood, a Cozy Kitchen
print recipe

1 lb package short pasta (penne, elbow macaroni, etc) I used large macaroni
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour, sifted
5 cups milk
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
8-oz block sharp or regular white cheddar cheese, grated and divided (about 2 cups)
8-oz block smoked Gouda cheese, grated and divided (about 2 cups)
4-oz  medium cheddar cheese, grated and divided ( about 1 cup)
4 oz  regular Gouda cheese, grated and divided (about 1 cup)
2 cups fresh spinach, washed
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, drained

Cook the pasta about 7-8 minutes in boiling salted water, remove when pasta is al dente.  Set aside.

Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat; whisk in flour until smooth. Continue whisking and cook for 2 minutes. Gradually whisk in milk. Whisking constantly, cook for 5 minutes or until thickened. Reduce heat to low and stir in salt, black pepper and most of the cheese, reserving about two cups of cheese. Stir in the fresh spinach and sun dried tomatoes. Remove from heat.

Pour the pasta in a lightly greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Spoon the cheese sauce over the pasta. 
Using a large spoon, evenly distribute the sauce without stirring. 
Sprinkle the top with the remaining cup of assorted cheeses.

Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until bubbly. Remove from oven, let sit for about 5-10 minutes before serving.


- This recipe is easy to half. I halved this recipe, and baked it in a 8 inch casserole. Perfect!
-You may use any combo of cheeses in this recipe, I would not suggest using more than 2 cups of smoked Gouda, the flavor is very distinct, and 2 cups of smoked Gouda goes a long way :)

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  1. This is right up my alley! Love the gouda incorporated with the spinach and sun dried tomatoes! Yum! Great recipe!

  2. I am in love with this recipe!!!! I love the smoked gouda with the sundried tomatoes! Its definitely all grown up!

  3. This looks so yummy! I love the sundried tomatoes!

  4. What a fabulous sounding recipe and your pictures have me wanting a bowl right now.

    My Crazy Cooking Challenge entry: Velvety Mac & Cheese.

    Cook Lisa Cook

  5. That looks amazing! Came over from the mac-n-cheese challenge. Come check mine out, it's the mini mac-n-cheese pies :)

    The Farm Girl

  6. I LOVE sun dried tomatoes ... and gouda... and spinach! Your pasta is simply to die for. And that's saying a lot among all these fantastic m&C recipes. :)

  7. Gouda is a heavenly cheese for Mr Mac..Thanks for stopping by.

  8. that looks so elegant! love it!

    Stopping by from the MACARONI & CHEESE Linky Party through Moms Crazy Cooking

  9. Your picture says it all, WOW!

    Thanks for joining us for the first month of CCC, stop by and check out my Mac & Cheese Bites!

  10. Wow, I just want to lick my computer screen. Well done!

  11. Beautiful photography! No wonder yours was the most clicked on recipe! Congrats! I just added this mac and cheese recipe to my must-try list. Great pick!

    Check out my mac and cheese post if you like :)


  12. This looks incredible! You're right, I think every food blog as a mac and cheese post. It was one of my first! This one is exceptional :)

  13. That is one gorgeous looking bowl of mac n' cheese. The round-up is also a real treat. This is my first visit to your blog, so I decided to take some extra time to browse through your earlier entries. I'm so glad I did that. I really like the food and recipes you share with your readers and I'll be back. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  14. This looks divine! Maybe a little heavy on the Gouda for my taste (as you said, it does have a very distinct taste). I love the idea of adding spinach for more protein.

    I don't like many mac&cheese recipes, but I love this one from my sis-in-law, definitely a keeper, I promise!

  15. Gasp! I.. I just tried making those. And, if they tasted so great from the hands of a fail cook as me, I can't imagine what YOURS taste like!

    International Calls to Australia


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