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Yup, this is SOOOO happening right now. An Irishman’s Mac and Cheese is happening right now!

Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest

I normally wouldn’t start chatting your ear off about St. Patrick’s Day inspired recipes this early, but with Easter being in March this year, St. Patrick’s Day recipes need to come out a bit sooner.

Totally fine by me, because umm, when is mac and cheese not a good idea? FYI – it’s always a good idea, but especially on a Monday. 🙂

So even though I don’t mind chatting about this Irishman’s Mac and Cheese, I am kind of bummed that Easter is in March this year. Anyone with me?? It’s totally throwing me off. I mean for one, March is just not “springy” enough for Easter. Come Easter there should be things popping out of the ground and warmer temps. I mean let’s be real, that just doesn’t typically happen by the end of March. Second, I simply like having Easter in April, it adds something special, gives it color and just makes it more, well… fun! UGH. For real though, does this bother anyone else or is it just crazy and insane me?

SIDE NOTE: I just pulled meringue out of my hair and off of my red sweatshirt (that I have been wearing since Saturday). The sweatshirt is covered in so many different foods I can’t even distinguish what they all are any more. To say that I need a shower would be and understatement. My kitchen could probably use a good scrub too, but well, that’s most likely not going to happen…

Alright, but let’s be serious. Are you guys ready for this mac and cheese??? Because it is legit.

Meaning it’s loaded with all things a really good mac and cheese should be loaded with, and then some.

Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest

To be completely honest, I don’t know a whole lot about Irish cooking. I know they eat a lot of potatoes, corn beef, cabbage, fish and chips (which are potatoes), but other than that I’m really not all that knowledgable on Irish cooking.

Ohhhh, but I do know they like their stout beers and especially their whiskey.

Basically what I did is took the Irish foods I know (and love) and put them into a mac and cheese…the bestest mac and cheese. I used mass amounts of sharp Irish cheddar, a little bacon, some kale pesto and um well as you can see, a little potato chip crumble situation baked on top. You may be thinking twice about that kale, and maybe even questioning potato chips on top of mac and cheese, but just stop all those thoughts right now. If you don’t like kale, that’s fine, leave it out, but don’t even think twice about omitting those potato chips.

I mean, you love a good baked mac and cheese with a buttery bread crumb on top right?!? Well, this is that mac and cheese only elevated. Traditionally I’m really not all that into potato chips, but there are certain foods that I just love paring them with. They add a delicious salty crunch and when I thought of that salty crunch atop a buttery, cheesy mac and cheese, I couldn’t resist.

It had to happen.

So I created the ultimate “Irishman’s Mac and Cheese”.  Think a little stout, a lot of cheese, crispy bacon, kale for greens and flavor (and because I heard somewhere that Irish like dark greens…is this true??), topped with crushed all natural potato chips and baked to cheesy pasta perfection.

Really though, could there be anything better? And on a Monday to boot??

Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest

The only thing missing is a little whiskey…but I’m sure that could be arranged.

Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest

Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest

An Irishman's Mac and Cheese.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings: 6 Servings
Calories Per Serving: 791 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.


Kale Pesto Slaw

  • 1 bunch kale sliced into thin shreds
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt
  • 1/3 cup [homemade |] or store- bought pesto
  • juice of half a lemon

Mac and Cheese

  • 1 pound of your favorite short cut pasta
  • 4-6 slices thick cut bacon chopped
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup stout beer or another 1/2 cup of milk
  • 3 cups whole milk warm
  • 2 1/2 cups sharp Irish white cheddar cheese shredded
  • 1 1/4 cups havarti cheese shredded
  • 1/4 cup of the kale slaw recipe above
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoons salt + pepper
  • 1-2 cups lightly crushed potato chips


Kale Pesto Slaw

  • Add the kale to a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil and salt. Massage the olive oil and salt into the kale for a minute or two. Add the pesto and lemon juice, toss well to combine. Keep stored in the fridge.

Mac and Cheese

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a baking dish with nonstick spray or lightly grease with oil.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the pasta until al-dente. You want it to have a bit of bite to it. It will finish cooking in the oven. Drain well.
  • In the same pot you boiled the pasta, cook the bacon over medium heat until browned and crisp. Remove the bacon from the pot and drain on a paper towel lined plate. Drain all but one tablespoon of the bacon grease out of the pot. In the same pot, melt the 4 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour. Reduce the heat to medium-low and let cook/bubble for 1 minute, stirring once or twice to avoid burning. Gradually whisk in the beer and cook another minute. Now slowly pour in the milk, whisking until combined. Raise the heat up to medium-high. Bring the mixture to a boil, whisking frequently until the sauce has thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in all of the cheese, kale pesto, mustard powder, cayenne, salt and pepper. Stir until the cheese is fully melted (if needed, return the pot to the heat to fully melt the cheese). Stir in the pasta and bacon, transfer to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle on the potato chips crumbs and place the baking dish on top of a baking sheet. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the crumbs are golden brown and the sauce is bubbling. Remove from the oven and let site five minutes (yeah, right). Top with the kale pesto slaw. Dig in!!
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Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest

Mac and Cheese + cocktails = Monday done right! 🙂 Oh, and don’t forget to keep on voting!

An Irishman’s Mac and Cheese | @hbharvest

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  1. This was absolutely DELICIOUS! It took some time to all come together, but I had some friends over and we sipped wine while I cooked, (my Tempranillo paired well) and it went by in a flash! 10/10, will absolutely make again!

    1. Hi Kimberly,
      Wonderful!!🍀 I love to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks so much for trying it out:)

    1. Hi Meg! I am working on adding it to my blog, but I do not for now! So sorry about this but I hope you love it!

  2. been obsessing over this recipe for at least a month. we’ve have a block of irish cheddar in the fridge that I’ve been wanting to make use of and came across this recipe. bought first living basil plant and made it as far as making some walnut pesto AND the kale pesto slaw but left it in the fridge long enough that my refrigerator bandit got to both before i did. “i didn’t know what it was for and it was delicious.” full disclosure…we couldn’t keep our hands off the guiness either. Round two….bought another living basil plant, a can of guiness and got to the recipe last night while everyone else had retired for the evening. the smell alone was mouthwatering. i had a spoonful as it cooled before i put it into the fridge and loved it. i hadn’t tasted it with the kale pesto slaw until this morning when i served it with a poached egg for a breakfast pasta dish and what a difference it makes.
    love it BOTH ways. i even tasted it cold and enjoyed it as well, but I’m one of those cold pizza eaters too. can’t wait to try more of your recipes. thx

  3. What should I use instead of havarti? Provolone or more cheddar? I didn’t find havarti in a grocery.

    1. HI! Provolone, cheddar, or gouda would all be amazing. Use your favorite! Please let me know if you have other questions. Hope you love this recipe! Thanks! 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    Hey I just have to tell you.. you are a cooking goddess. Seriously. I definitely haven’t made all of your recipes, but every single one I have is a favorite of ours (my husband and I). You are a culinary genius and we appreciate you so much!! Thank you so much for sharing your talent. How else can we support you (besides the cookbook, have it)?

    P.S. this mac and cheese is insane. I love it way too much.

    1. Hi Bekah! I am so glad you have enjoyed the recipes from my blog and I hope you continue to!! Thank you so much!

  5. Yes, it is true that the Irish like their dark greens.

    My grandmother grew up on a farm in Cavan County and speaks longingly of the watercress that grew there.

    She also speaks longingly of the wild Irish salmon a boy down the lane used to catch for her illegally on someone’s estate – a Christmas gift for her – but…well, that’s another story!

  6. Hi! First time looking at your blog. I love as looking for a good Mac and cheese recipe for a potluck and this one caught my attention. It looks delicious. Question, will this hold well in a crockpot after it is cooked? Maybe in a warm setting?

    Also, I can’t believe and I he uppity people giving you a hard time. I’m super Irish and even though it’s not traditionally Irish, I can definitely see the Irish inspiration in this recipe. People need to chill out and keep the trolling for 4chan.

    1. Hey Melissa!

      Yes, I think this will be great on the warm setting in a crockpot. I have not tried that, but I don’t see why it would not work. And THANK YOOU! Means a lot and I hope you LOVE that mac and cheese! Let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks again! 🙂

  7. I made this for St Patrick’s day dinner and it was soooo good! I wonder how it would be if the entire kale pesto was mixed into the dish before baking? We ended up mixing it together in our bowls anyway. Thanks for a great recipe!

    1. SOOO happy you love this recipe! Thanks so much! 🙂 I am sure having the pesto mixed in would be great!

  8. This is inspired.
    I came here looking for a different avocado toast recipe (which I found, thank you), and here I find this. THIS! It is like all of my favorite things in one dish.