Zucchini Bacon Mac and Cheese

Zucchini Bacon Mac and Cheese made with elbow pasta, half and half, Cheddar and Parmesan cheese. Comfort food. Great Summer pasta recipe!


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 regular size zucchinis, sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 12 oz elbow pasta (for gluten free version, use Tinkyada brown rice elbow pasta)
  • 1 cup half and half
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
  • 12 bacon slices, chopped


  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add sliced zucchini and minced garlic and saute for about 5-7 minutes, occasionally stirring, until zucchini softens and browns a bit, uncovered. Midway through cooking, season with salt.
  2. Cook elbow pasta al dente, then rinse with cold water to stop cooking. This is done because you will continue cooking the pasta once you add in cream sauce - and at that point pasta will reach the ideal texture.
  3. Return elbow pasta to the pot. Add half and half, bring to boil. Immediately add Cheddar cheese and Parmesan cheese. Reduce to simmer. Cook for several minutes, constantly stirring until cheese melts and coats the pasta.
  4. Add chopped bacon (reserving some for garnish) and cooked zucchini from step 1, mix, heat through, turn off heat, and serve, sprinkling each serving with reserved chopped bacon!