Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese

Take a fun twist on a classic dish with some added heat. This mac and cheese features, old cheddar, buffalo hot sauce, and chicken, then topped with crunchy panko breadcrumbs.

Prep Time

20 min

Cook Time

40 min

Total Time

1 hr


  • 11 x 7-inch (28 x 18 cm) baking dish
  • large saucepan
  • large pot


  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) butter
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (250 mL) 35% whipping cream
  • 1 cup (250 mL) milk
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • 3 cups (750 mL) shredded old Cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) buffalo hot sauce
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) each salt and pepper
  • 3 cups (750 mL) chopped, cooked chicken
  • 3 cups (750 mL) cooked elbow macaroni

Breadcrumb topping: 

  • 3/4 cup (175 mL) panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) butter, melted
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) chopped, fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) buffalo hot sauce


  1. Make ahead: In a pot of boiling, salted water, cook 2 cups (500 mL) elbow macaroni for about 8 minutes or until al dente. Drain well and rinse with cold water. Measure 3 cups (750 mL) of the cooked macaroni to use for this delicious recipe.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter an 11 x 7-inch (28 x 18 cm) baking dish.
  3. In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Gradually whisk in cream, milk, and garlic. Cook, whisking gently for about 5 minutes or until it starts to bubble and thicken. Reduce heat to low; stir in cheese. Remove from heat and stir until cheese is melted. Stir in buffalo sauce, salt and pepper.
  4. Stir in chicken and macaroni until well combined. Pour into prepared baking dish.
  5. Breadcrumb Topping: In a small bowl, stir together breadcrumbs, butter, parsley and hot sauce. Sprinkle evenly over top of macaroni mixture. Bake for about 30 minutes or until bubbly around edges and top is golden. Let cool slightly before serving.


Cover and refrigerate before baking for up to 1 day. Bake covered as above and add about 10 minutes or until heated through. Uncover for last 10 minutes for a golden top.