I don't want to sidetrack the thread but this thread helped create the recipe below. I'm walking through the grocery store today, down the pasta aisle, thinking about that mac and cheese from the restaurant. I spotted a jar of sauce on the shelf and BAM! this recipe literally formed in my head on the spot.
Quick 'n Easy Four Cheese Pasta
Although this really isn't "macaroni and cheese", and won't work in a smoker, it is pretty darn good. I call it a "cheater" recipe because it uses store bought Alfredo sauce, not homemade. If you like creamy, cheesy sauce on your pasta, give this a try. My wife was raving about it all evening.
16 oz Rotelle, rotini, or fisarmoniche pasta
2 Tbs salt
1/4 cup olive oil
15 oz jar Classico Four Cheese Alfredo sauce
3/4 cup whole milk
4 oz neufchatel low fat cream cheese
1/2 cup shredded three cheese Italian blend
1. Add the salt and olive oil to 1 gallon of water in a pot and turn on high heat to bring to a boil. When the water starts to boil add the pasta, stir to prevent sticking, then cover and set the timer for 8 minutes to cook to a nice al dente texture.
2. While water is heating to a boil, in a separate saucepan add the jar of Alfredo sauce, milk, and cheeses. Turn the heat to medium low. Break up the neufchatel cheese with a spoon as you stir constantly to prevent the milk or cheese from burning. Continue to stir and heat until you see the first wisps of steam and the cheeses are all melted into the sauce. Turn off the heat and cover.
3. Drain the pasta into a colander when done, quickly transfer to a bowl, then add the sauce to the pasta, stirring to coat completely.
4. Add fresh ground pepper to taste.