Bacon, pea & basil macaroni

Bacon, pea & basil macaroni

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(56 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 20 mins


Serves 4
The perfect summer comfort food - classic macaroni cheese with extra veggies and herbs

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable


  • kcal703
  • fat32g
  • saturates16g
  • carbs81g
  • sugars7g
  • fibre6g
  • protein28g
  • salt1.87g
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  • 6 rashers streaky bacon, chopped
  • 2 leeks, finely sliced into rings



    Like garlic and onion, leeks are a member of the allium family, but have their own distinct…

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 140g frozen pea
  • 400g macaroni
  • 200g pack soft cheese
  • 85g mature cheddar, grated
  • 1 tbsp English mustard
  • small bunch basil, shredded



    Most closely associated with Mediterranean cooking but also very prevalent in Asian food, the…


  1. Fry the bacon and leeks in the oil for 10 mins until the bacon is golden and the leeks soft. Tip in the peas and heat through. Meanwhile, boil the pasta and heat the grill to high.

  2. Reserve 150ml of the cooking water before you drain the pasta, then add it, the soft cheese, half the grated cheese and the mustard to the pan with the veg. Stir until the cheese melts into a creamy sauce. Stir in most of the basil and the pasta, then scatter with the rest of the cheese. Grill for 2-3 mins until the cheese melts. Scatter with basil to serve.

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Comments (62)

maiowbird's picture

Yum, yum, yum! I made this with veggie bacon pieces from Tesco and low fat Philly and it was soooo tasty! definitely great comfort food. I'm going to make all of my cheese sauces like this in the future. :)

MaxxyysMum's picture

This went down very well with everyone - used 300g macaroni and there was still some over after feeding 2 adults & 2 hungry teenagers.

khitajrah's picture

Rated 5 stars by everyone, including a very fussy 9 year old. This recipe is now replacing Nigella Lawson's macaroni and cheese as a regular meal.

dutes8080's picture

Enjoyed this immensely (reheats well too) I tried using Tesco lo-fat Roule as a soft cheese (2 x 150gms) and it worked perfectly. Great comfort food and so easy. I did as someone suggested bake it, and as it was topped with tomatoes finished it off under a high grill.

Luverly Jubly!

janelow's picture

This is now one of the family's favourite meals - my kids love anything with cheese and pasta. I add a breadcrumb and cheese topping and pop it under the grill. Agree with previous comments that you only need about 300g of pasta. Great mid week supper.

catriona93's picture

Absolutely fabby . . . even without the leeks (i mean really, who has leeks lying about the house?) quick, easy, filling and satisfying . . . would recommend to anyone who doesn't hate cheese!

simpkins's picture


With VERY strong cheese this tastes amazing ... although very big portions.

Linnyma's picture

This recipe was easy, quick and tasty. The portions were just right although my son and husband could have eated more simply because it was so good.

chuffyj's picture

This recipe is brilliant, quick, easy, tasty and cheap - and, as it says, a great comfort food. I made an extra large portion and took the leftovers to work for lunch the next day - my colleagues were envious! I think it works best with just the leeks and pancetta.

snoogans888's picture

I used pancetta and low fat Tesco Value soft cheese which worked very well. I also only used about 300g of pasta and used Dijon mustard instead. This was a delicious dish when freshly made, but just as good reheated in the microwave the next day. Will definitely make it again.

hamishmum's picture

Yummy! I absolutely loved this dish & will find macaroni cheese just too plain from now on! I needed to add more water to make the sauce looser but that was the only change i made.

Frantic Flapjack's picture

Good supper dish. Served with carrots.

jennymaggs's picture

Quick easy and very tasty, mustard gave the sauce a lovely flavour

musling's picture

This wasn't really to my taste. I found to fat (even though I used low fat soft cheese and cheddar). Maybe better for winther than summer - it would be better with at lot more vegetables.

sheepie's picture

Everyone thought this was great. I topped it with sliced tomato and baked it for 20mins rather than grilling, as our grill doesn't work! End product was brilliant. I'd advise using really strong cheese.

jburton's picture

This was really lovely, my fella couldn't get enough of it and was still talking about it two days later, so a definite success id say.
As i was only cooking it for two i diddnt cook the full amount of pasta. I cooked 300g but only used about 200g, but kept the same amount of sauce. Lovely. I served this with Cheese & Garlic Ciabatta bread, perfect. I thought this dish would be just an ordinary Macaroni cheese, how wrong was i, it was not like that at all, very flavoursome, not boring at all. I also diddnt use Macaroni i used Pene as that was what i had in the cupboard.x

naomibuckley's picture

The kids couldn't get this down their throats fast enough! Definately one of their favourites.

clujud's picture

used back bacon rather than streaky bacon and missed out the mustard, it was delicious the extra we'd made for lunch the next day didn't survive that long. We'll definitely be making it again

rozmorgan's picture

Just had this. It was very nice, light and the bacon made a nice salty compliment. We used spring onion and boyfriend forgot the peas. I have no doubt with the added sweetness from the peas it would have been even better. Light and filling, perfect for a sunny quick lunch.

schizopear's picture

i made a vegetarian version of this (forgot to buy any bacon!) and used low fat soft cheese. it tasted fine. not a bad supper but would probably have been better with the bacon!


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