Mac and cheese is hands down one of the most delectable comfort foods out there. You can choose to have lots of fun with a large batch of mac and cheese by setting up a huge and delicious mac and cheese bar.
Add a ton of your favorite toppings into the mix, invite your friends and family over, and enjoy the party!
Read on to learn everything about what to add to mac and cheese!
A mac and cheese bar is exactly what it sounds like. It’s like a salad bar, but with mac and cheese being the star dish, which makes it so much more delicious!
A mac and cheese bar has a huge bowl of mac and cheese that’s surrounded by a multitude of creative, fun, and delicious toppings.
Common mac and cheese topping usually include meat, cheese, veggies, herbs, and crisps. You can mix and match whichever toppings you want which is what makes it so much fun!
How to Set Up a Mac and Cheese Bar
The first step in setting up the perfect mac and cheese bar is to focus on the toppings. Try to arrange toppings that are versatile and would also go well with each other.
Think of the flavors and the textures of your toppings and go from there. Make sure to add lots of veggies, cheeses, herbs, sauces, meat, and crunch as well!
Other than deciding the toppings, setting up the bar is quite easy. Simply transfer the mac and cheese in a huge serving bowl and arrange all the different toppings in smaller bowls and platters around it.
A neat trick that you can use is to place the most loved toppings closer to the main dish and then branch out with your toppings!
Mac and Cheese Toppings
There are just so many foods that go incredibly well on top of a steaming bowl of mac and cheese. Here are some of my favorite mac and cheese add ins:
Bacon is an incredibly delectable mac and cheese topping thanks to its divine crispiness that goes on-so-well with the cheesiness of the star dish.
You can simply fry some bacon and keep it as is in a platter or chop it up and keep it in a bowl at the bar. Either way, it’s going to taste just as good.
There’s just something truly magical about adding a generous layer of mildly salty potato chips on top of a steaming bowl of mac and cheese! When it comes to things to add to mac and cheese this just doesn’t get enough respect.
The mild saltiness of the chips goes so well with the cheesiness and creaminess. Oh, and don’t even get me started on the delightful crunchiness that potato chips bring to the dish!
Alternatively, you can branch out and use oyster or prawn crackers. You can also use a spicier or even tangier variety of chips, such as crab chips. Another fun option is Doritos!
Chili and Some More Meat
Some people prefer to keep things simple and stick to plain old meat as a topping for their mac and cheese bar. However, I’m not one of those people! So here is a list of what meat goes with mac and cheese.
My take on a meaty topping is a deliciously spicy and flavorful bowl of chili.
It adds such a wide range of flavors to the relatively plain mac and cheese, which makes it even tastier. Plus, you can always top the chili with some crispy chips for a winner combo.
Similarly, fried chicken, chopped hot dog, shredded pork, and shrimp are all great options as well.
Butter Crackers and Breadcrumbs
Another fantastic topping for mac and cheese has to be butter crackers. This is because as the name suggests, they’re deliciously buttery. You can mix them with some Old Bay seasoning for a wonderful burst of flavor.
Simply crush the crackers and mix the crushed crackers with the seasoning of your choice to prepare your mac and cheese topping. You can do the same with breadcrumbs as well.
You could essentially wind up with breaded mac and cheese. Doesn’t that sound delicious?
When it comes to using veggies as a topping for your mac and cheese you can do it two ways – either chop some veggies and mix them up in a bowl or serve them separately.
I like doing both so that my guests have the option to choose! My favorite veggies to use for the toppings are carrots, onions, cauliflower, bean sprouts, broccoli, mushrooms, bell peppers, and tomatoes.
Olives and Jalapenos
I just had to add these two beautiful toppings to the list. Both green and black olives work well with mac and cheese. Just chop them up into thin slices and put them in a bowl.
Meanwhile, the spiciness of the jalapenos adds a nice kick to the mac and cheese, so you can add some chopped up jalapenos to your bar!
More Cheese Please
I just had to add these two beautiful toppings to the list. Both green and black olives work well with I mean, this one’s a given, right? Who wouldn’t want to add more cheese on top of their bowl of mac and cheese? Grated parmesan and Romano cheese work best here. Just grate them separately and put them in two different bowls.
Tips and Tricks
When preparing a mac and cheese bar, just remember the ultimate tip is to always find toppings that have different flavors and textures.
This way, your guests will be able to mix and match the toppings and have all the fun in the world with them! Also, a good idea is to combine the breadcrumbs and cracker crumbs with the seasonings of your choice for a boost of flavor.
The Bottom Line
I hope you enjoyed reading this guide. Just use as many aforementioned toppings for your bar and enjoy the fruits of your labor with the people you love!
- Potato chips
- Chili and some more meat
- Butter crackers and breadcrumbs
- Veggie galore
- Olives and jalapenos
- More cheese
- Choose a few toppings to try.
- Share with us your favorite combo.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 0Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 0mgCarbohydrates: 0gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g