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Cheeseburger Mac and Cheese

Cheeseburger Mac and Cheese


  • 1 pound cavatappi pasta

  • 1 pound ground sirloin

  • 1 tablespoon grill seasoning (about a palmful)

  • 1/4 cup ketchup

  • 1/4 cup yellow mustard

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 1 medium red onion, chopped

  • Salt and ground black pepper

  • 2 tablespoons flour

  • 2 cups milk

  • 1 1/4 cups grated yellow cheddar cheese, divided

  • 1 1/4 cups grated Swiss cheese, divided

  • 3 small tomatoes, seeded and chopped

  • 1 deli-style pickle, chopped


Pre-heat the oven to 400ºF.

Place a large pot of salted water over high heat and bring to a boil. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until just shy of al dente, according to the package directions. Drain the cooked pasta and reserve. In a medium size mixing bowl, combine the ground sirloin with the grill seasoning, ketchup and yellow mustard. Grab about a tablespoon of meat in your hand and roll it into a small ball; repeat with the remaining meat. Place the mini meatballs onto a baking sheet, drizzle with 2 tablespoons EVOO and bake until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Turn off the oven and turn on the broiler. While the mini meatballs are in the oven, heat a large saucepot over medium-high heat with one turn of the pan of EVOO, about 1 tablespoon, and the butter. Cook the red onion with some salt and pepper until softened, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle flour over the top and cook for about 1 minute. Whisk in the milk, season with salt and pepper and cook until thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove the sauce from heat and whisk in 1 cup of each cheese. Add the drained pasta to the cheese sauce along with the baked meatballs and toss to combine. Pour everything out into a casserole dish and sprinkle with the remaining cheddar and Swiss cheese. If serving immediately, toss the mac under the broiler until the top is golden brown and bubbly. Top with the chopped tomatoes and pickles, and serve.