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Pork Belly Macaroni and Cheese!


Mandi and I had been wanting to make mac and cheese for a week or 2. We knew we didn't want to go out on the weekend but rather keep it low key so we decided to make the macaroni and cheese on Friday night and watch the top chef I had downloaded. On Thursday while shopping for tacos, I was minding my own business in the store when what did I see but a pack of beautiful slabs of pork belly! This is a rare find in Bermuda so I snatched it up without even thinking of what we would do with it. After brainstorming for a bit, we decided to incorporate it into the mac and cheese we had been craving. We decided that a BBQ Sauce flavor would help bring the pork belly and mac and cheese together as one. It is hard for me to do this post today because now I am craving this again! It was one of the best things we have made in a very long time and now im starving for a huge scoop of pork belly mac and cheese!

We decided to make BBQ sauce and we looked around online a bit. Bobby flay had a great looking recipe for mesa grill BBQ sauce on the food network website so we went with that. The calls for ancho chile powder and pasilla chile powder. We found some dried anchos and dried de arbols so we decided to use those for the powder.

Pork belly... so good!

Getting tomatoes ready for the BBQ sauce.

Season the belly

Start the sauce by sautéing butter, garlic and red onions.

Then add the tomatoes

Then the bowl of ingredients shown before.

Meanwhile Mandi was prepping some cheese.

We went with a blend of cheddar, mozzarella, and gruyere.

Put this in the blender

This is some of the best BBQ sauce you will ever have.

Sear the belly on all sides

Put the blended sauce into a deep pot. Put the pork belly in here after it is seared. Add some water if they are not covered.

We went with this type of pasta that's kinda like a cross between elbow and mini shells.

How awesome does THAT look? These came scored already but if they aren't, do that.

We wanted some contrast in the pasta so we went with cauliflower because it does well with cheese and bakes.

The beginning of the roux for the sauce.

Sorry for the blur, this is the pork belly after simmering on low for about an hour and a half.

Cook pasta at least 3 minutes less then it says on the box. It will cook more in the oven.

Depending on your preference, you can take off some of the fat or keep it all. I believe we left most of it but took off the chewier bits. Most of the belly cooks up to a very delicious texture and flavor and isn't like a lot of the fat that is chewy and hard or impossible to eat.

The cheese in the roux

Add the diced up belly, cauliflower, and a small amount of red onion back into the cooking sauce and let it sit for 5 minutes.

Strain out everything into the baking dish. Strain it slightly better then we did. You want a good amount of BBQ sauce into the pasta but it is possible that we had slightly too much.

Hungry yet?

Grate some parmesan on top and also a handful or so of breadcrumbs. Hi Amy!

Some things words can't describe. A bunch of food porn comin right up.

This is what happens after you eat this meal. You cant move, but also cant stop smiling.

Mesa BBQ sauce
1 lb pasta (elbow mac is good)
½ lb gruyere
½ lb mozzarella
1 ½ lb cheddar.
1 head cauliflower
1 ½ lbs pork belly
Red onion

Feeds probably about 5 fatty's or up to 8 normal adults

Place the sauce in a deep pot.
Sear the pork belly on all sides in a very hot pan.
Add pork to pot with sauce and simmer on low partially covered for about an hour and a half. Add water if pork is not fully covered.
Grate and combine all cheeses
Bring water to a boil, cook pasta 3 minutes less then box says
Heat and whisk 3 tablespoons of butter and flour on medium low until combined and lump free. About 5 minutes.
Add 3 cups of milk, simmer for 5 minutes
Add most of the cheese. Stir till somewhat smooth
Remove pork belly from braising liquid
Dice and remove unwanted parts (if there are any), return to sauce with cauliflower and a small amount of diced red onion.
Drain pasta and put in baking dish
Add pork belly, cauliflower, and red onion with its coating of sauce
Add cheese mixture
Fold and mix
Grate some parmesan on the top, add the rest of the cheese (if it fits) and some breadcrumbs
Put in the oven at 400 for about 20 minutes, if the top doesn't look delicious, broil it for 2 minutes.

The hardest part - let sit for 5 or 10 minutes before scooping!


This meal is so good, it'll make you wanna slap your mama!

Dan we actually took off most of the fat... I cut off the entire layer of fat that sits on top of each piece before chopping it all up. I didnt trim any of the other fat off but the big slabs of fat that you see in the pics I removed completely.

holy delicious batman.



i'm officially horny over food - thanks.

You've shaved your beard?!
Your domain name is now quite misleading.

we made this today, and although we were to lazy to make are own bbq sauce (we replaced with ray's) and Shaws doesnt carry pork belly (we substituted with boneless pork ribs,) it didnt change the fact that thoes 5 - 10 minutes feel like 3 hours! it was so delicious and completely worth the wait.

Oh my god amazing. I've never cooked with pork belly but this looks like a GREAT reason to.

So this post was singled out today by tastepotting on twitter. Verbatim: "if you put Seared Pork Belly in your Mac and Cheese, we might propose to you -->

found this through Tastespotting.... I love "How To" photos... and love pork belly even more. Great idea! Cheers.

made this last night with venison, it was amazing.

hi, that's really really nice of you for sharing this recipe and by the way nice photos and real funny the last pic!

Just made this as a side for Thanksgiving dinner... Looks amazing!! Smells Amazing!!! I will let you know how it goes over, but I think it is pretty obvious everyone is ready to try it!!!

I will say I did mine a little different: I used a 1.5lb Pork tenderloin cut into about 1" cubes. I simmered them in a homemade BBQ sauce for about 45 minutes on low to medium heat. I used regular elbow macaroni for my pasta. For the cheese sauce I began my roux about the same, but due to the way I make my BBQ sauce, I figured Seriously Sharp cheddar and Colby Jack would work better with the flavor. Right before it went in the oven, I grated a generous amount of spicy pepper jack on top and when it came out a generous bit of fresh grated parm!!!

UPDATE: This went over amazing at thanksgiving!!! Everyone loved it!! I am passing arouind the link to this page for everyone attending!!!

all I have to say is "Oh My God, that looks incredible."

Heya this is kinda of off topic but I was wanting to know if
blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML.

I'm starting a blog soon but have no coding skills so I wanted to get guidance from someone with experience. Any help would be enormously appreciated!

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