Berbere Spiced Mac n’ Cheese

  • Servings : 24 servings
  • Prep Time : 0m
  • Cook Time : 0m
  • Ready In : 0m

The flavors of South African spices in a classic comfort food.
Created by Chef Roy Villacrusis

Chef Notes:

The basic mac and cheese gets a spicy update with the complex flavors of Berbere and balanced with the mild flavor and cooling texture of Ayib. Easily convertible to appetizer or entrée portions and can also play well as a one bite pass around that will surely wake up your taste buds.

Ayib is an Ethiopian cheese similar to cottage cheese. Berbere is an Ethiopian spice blend that unmistakably represent the flavor of Ethiopian Cuisine and culture.


Step 1

Cook the pasta for 6 minutes, drain and toss with a bit of oil and cool down on a sheet tray.

Step 2

Pre heat oven to 350F. Spray a 2 inch deep, full hotel pan with cooking spray.

Step 3

Mix mild cheddar, sharp cheddar, sour cream, ayib, and egg. Season with Berbere and salt to taste. A dash of milk for creamier consistency.

Step 4

Mix in with pasta and distribute evenly in the baking dish.

Step 5

Sprinkle the reserved cheddar cheese on top.

Step 6

Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbling.

Step 7

Season pork chicharron with Berbere and salt.

Step 8

Spoon on individual serving being careful to keep a crust on top of each portions.

Step 9

Sprinkle seasoned pork chicharron on top.

Step 10

Top with more Ayib and Berbere as desired.


  • Cooking spray
  • 3 lb Barilla Cellentani Pasta
  • 3 lb mild cheddar cheese, grated, reserve some for topping
  • 1½ lb sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 2¼ cup sour cream
  • ¾ cup plus ½ cup fresh ayib or other fresh farmers cheese reserve some for topping
  • 3 eggs
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 tsp berbere spice
  • 1½ cup crushed pork chicharron
  • Milk, optional
Recipe Type: ,
Chef Recommended Cuts
  • Cellentani / Cavatappi
Related Recipes:
  • Braised Short Rib Penne

  • Rigatoni Sausage Caponata

  • Baked Orzotto with Cavallo Nero and Spring Peas

  • Campanelle al Salmone

  • Barilla Elbow Mac and Cheese with Turmeric and Roasted Cauliflower

Nutritional Info

This information is per serving.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 184g
Servings Per Container

Amount Per Serving
Calories 630
Calories from Fat 324
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 36g
Saturated Fat 19g
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 125mg
Sodium 680mg
Total Carbohydrate 48g
Dietary Fiber 2g
Sugars 3g
Protein 35g

Vitamin A %
Vitamin C %
Calcium 682%
Iron 2%
Allergy Information: Contains Egg, Fish, Milk, Peanut, Shellfish, Soy, Tree Nuts, Wheat. May also contain Crustaceans, Gluten Mustard, Sesame Seeds.
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Please note: for the purpose of the nutritional assessment, total sodium does not include salt added to the cooking water. When salt is listed "as needed" in the ingredient list, 1 tsp total is included in the analysis.