Tips & Goods | August 1, 2018

Smoked Shells and White Cheese

What could be better than mac n cheese? Smoked mac and cheese! Today I’m going to teach you how to make THE best shells and cheese on your pellet grill.


smoked shells and white cheese in a blue skillet topped with bacon

Can You Smoke Things Other Than Meat?

Yes! Yes you can!  You can smoke veggies, and even mac and cheese! Pellet grills, like my Camp Chef Woodwind, cook at a low temperature and act almost like a flavorful oven, so cooking mac and cheese on your pellet grill works perfectly.

four shredded cheeses in a wooden cutting board next to a checkered napkin

If One Cheese is Good – Five Cheeses Are Better

I wanted this recipe to have a full depth of flavor, so I’ve included five cheeses.  I have a love for white cheddar and shells – so I chose pale cheeses that compliment each other.

  • white cheddar
  • mozzarella
  • gouda
  • parmesan
  • cream cheese

Pro Tip: Grate your own cheese.  Avoid the pre-shredded cheese for this recipe. Most contain added ingredients that will create a gritty texture in your sauce.

white sauce in a blue dutch oven

How To Make A White Sauce

The base of most macaroni, or shells in this case, and cheese is a white sauce.  Don’t be intimidated – I’ll tell you exactly how to do it.

  1. Melt butter in a dutch oven over medium low heat.
  2. Add flour and whisk until well combined and fragrance is nutty.
  3. Add milk while continuously whisking, and whisk until smooth.
  4. Add cream cheese and stir until melted and full incorporated.

collage of making a white sauce

Finish It Off

Now you’re ready to add in additional shredded cheeses and your pasta! Check out my instructional video for a demonstration of making this easy and delicious shells and white cheese.

Smoked shells and white cheese close up

How Long Do You Smoke Mac and Cheese?

Using a pellet grill allows you to cook at a low temperature while infusing your food with the flavor of your chosen pellets.  Here I’ve used oak pellets, but feel free to use your favorite!  Each wood pellet has a unique note.

For this shells and cheese you only need to smoke about 35-40 minutes to get a nice smoked flavor without drying our your dish.

Pro Tip: Use a cast iron skillet to smoke your smoked mac and cheese.  Smoking will not damage cast iron.

smoked shells and white cheese in a blue skillet topped with bacon

Let’s Be BFFs

If you make this recipe, please come back and leave me a comment!  I love hearing from you all!  For fresh and new recipes make sure you’re following us on Facebook and Instagram!

5 from 1 vote
smoked shells and white cheese in a blue skillet topped with bacon
Smoked Shells and White Cheese
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
35 mins
Total Time
1 hr

Creamy smoked shells and cheese made with five white cheeses and smoked to perfection.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: america
Keyword: easy mac and cheese, smoked mac and cheese
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 743 kcal
Author: Kadee
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups white cheddar shredded
  • 1 cup mozzarella shredded
  • 1 cup gouda shredded
  • 1/2 cup parmesan shredded
  • 4 pieces bacon cooked and crumbled
  • 1 lb medium shell pasta cooked al dente according package directions
  1. In a dutch oven, melt butter.

  2. Add flour and whisk until well combined and fragrant.

  3. Stir in milk and continue whisking until thickened.

  4. Add cream cheese, whisk until smooth. Add salt and pepper and stir to combine.

  5. Add white cheddar, mozzarella, gouda, and parmesan.  Whisk until smooth.

  6. Add pasta and gently toss until combined.

  7. Transfer to a cast iron skillet.

  8. Smoke at 300 degrees for 20 minutes.  Stir shells and cheese and smoke an additional 15 minutes.

  9. Top with crumbled bacon. 

  10. Serve immediately.

Nutrition Facts
Smoked Shells and White Cheese
Amount Per Serving (1 cup)
Calories 743 Calories from Fat 396
% Daily Value*
Fat 44g68%
Saturated Fat 25g156%
Cholesterol 136mg45%
Sodium 968mg42%
Potassium 382mg11%
Carbohydrates 52g17%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 32g64%
Vitamin A 1270IU25%
Calcium 666mg67%
Iron 1.5mg8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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