Jalapeño Mac And Cheese

Turn your cheesy favorite into a spicy delight!

Who can resist mac and cheese? We sure can’t, especially when it’s transformed into something a whole heck of a lot spicier. Take for instance this spicy jalapeño mac and cheese recipe. It’s mouth-watering just reading it.

Want to turn it up a notch? We love swapping in serrano chilies to kick up the heat. Need it turned down? Try using a milder cheese than pepper jack. 

Jalapeno mac and cheese

Jalapeño Mac and Cheese

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 40 mins


  • 1 pound macaroni
  • 1.5 pounds pepper jack shredded cheese (typically 4 packages if buying pre-shredded)
  • 2 cups milk
  • 5 jalapeño peppers chopped (remove seeds for less heat)
  • 1 white onion chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Cook the macaroni in boiling water with a pinch of salt until the pasta is al dente. Remove from heat and drain.
  • In a medium pan, heat the olive oil and sauté the jalapeño peppers, garlic and onions for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • In a skillet, heat the butter until melted and add in the flour. Mix to a paste.
  • Add in milk very slowly (a few tablespoons at a time) and whisk to combine properly.
  • Continue to whisk and heat mixture. Once combined and slightly thickened, add in 2/3 of the cheese and stir.
  • Stir in the macaroni and the hot peppers.
  • Spray a 9″ x 13″ baking pan with non-stick oil and pour the mixture into the pan.
  • Sprinkle the mix with the remaining cheese (optional: also top with jalapeño wheels) and bake for 15 minutes. Look for the cheese on top to turn a golden brown.
  • Remove from oven and let the mac and cheese sit for 5 minutes.
  • Serve.


Increase the heat by substituting 2 of the jalapeño peppers for serrano peppers.
Decrease the heat by substituting pepper jack for a mild cheese like white cheddar.


Did you make this?Mention @PepperScale or tag #PepperScale so we can see what you made!

UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on September 2, 2019 to include new content. It was originally published on August 26, 2014.