The Best Keto Mac & Cheese Yet?
We’re back with another delicious keto alternative to your favorite carb loaded foods. If you’re craving some satisfying, low carb baked mac and cheese look no further. In this recipe, we’re tackling the baked goodness that is baked keto Bacon Mac & Cheese!
Keto Mac & Cheese: Baked vs. Stovetop
If you Google baked mac and cheese vs. stovetop, you’ll find strong opinions supporting both cooking methods (which is not surprising since this is a cheese-based topic!). You’ll find people discussing how dry baked mac and cheese is compared to stovetop, and how the recipes just don’t workout. We’re here to debunk this cheesy conspiracy theory.
In our stovetop keto mac and cheese recipe (link here), we introduced a cheesy, gooey and delicious comfort food alternative to traditional mac and cheese. Naturally our next mission was to ketofy a low carb version of baked mac and cheese.
With baked mac and cheese, we wanted the pre-baked texture to be more liquid-based than creamy to help prevent drying out while baking; the sauce thickens during the cooking process & sitting after cooking.
The Keto Cheese Sauce
Like our other keto mac and cheese recipe, the cheese blend is completely customizable and 100% up to you – cook with what you’ve got in the fridge.
For this recipe, we went with sharp cheddar, parmesan, blue cheese and provolone. You’ll notice there were no cream-based cheese used in this recipe; cream-based cheese were removed to help create a less dense cheese sauce texture and prevent drying out while baking. To add additional moisture for the baking process, I used a mixture of heavy cream and almond milk.
Pro Tip: Be mindful when selecting cheeses, as many contain starch and other unnecessary additives.
Yes, bacon. Traditional baked mac and cheese is usually topped with some sort of crunch like breadcrumbs or croutons; we’re keto, so bread isn’t an option! A great alternative to breadcrumbs is crispy bacon! Not only does it provide a crisp topping, but also adds additional flavor and fats.
To save time, I keep a bag of Sam’s Club store brand bacon crumbles in the fridge. Of course if you’ve got the time, cook up your favorite bacon to use with this recipe.
The Pasta (Keto Shirataki Noodles)
Shirataki pasta has definitely been a lifesaver for me. Back in the late 90s, 00s when I first started low carb, products like this were not available in grocery stores or online. Now, we’ve got tons of great options for low-carb alternatives to high-carb foods. I cooked with Pasta Zero, which can be found at any Walmart in America in the produce section near the refrigerated salad dressings.
There are quite a few shirataki pasta options on the market today. We’ve got Miracle Moodles, Pasta Zero, Nasoya, Vitacost etc. The list goes on. Try them all and you’ll find your favorite. I’m partial to the Vitacost store brand! But I had Pasta Zero, so that’s what I used in this recipe. You can also purchase Miracle Noodles directly from Amazon if you cannot find them locally.
Pro Tip: after boiling, cut the pasta with kitchen sheers. This makes the pasta more mac and cheese-like.
Again, completely customizable based on your personal taste preferences. I like smoky, garlic flavored foods, so I went with Hungarian Paprika, garlic powder, salt & pepper.
Because this recipe is more like a “choose your own path” R. L. Stine book of cheese selections, I’m not going to include a complete macro breakdown. If you stick to the recommended portions for the cheeses you’ll end up with a wonderful low-carb, keto-friendly baked mac and cheese dish. The recipe below has 1 net carb per serving (based on macros listed on food labels).
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