Copia's Penne Pasta and Cheese Casserole Recipe -
Copia's Penne Pasta and Cheese Casserole Recipe
  • READY IN 1 hr

Copia's Penne Pasta and Cheese Casserole

Recipe by  

"This is a delicious combination of pasta, 2 cheeses, bacon bits, shallots and whipping cream with bread crumb topping. This dish should be served immediately as it does not reheat well because the fat separates from pasta and other ingredients."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 12 servings Change Servings
  • PREP

    15 mins
  • COOK

    45 mins

    1 hr


  1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Fill a large pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling, stir in the penne, and return to a boil. Cook the pasta uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the pasta has cooked through, but is still firm to the bite, about 11 minutes. Drain well in a colander set in the sink.
  3. Place the bacon in a large, deep skillet, and cook over medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Drain the bacon slices on a paper towel-lined plate, and reserve the remaining bacon drippings in a small bowl. Crumble the bacon into a bowl, then mix in the panko bread crumbs, butter, and chopped parsley. Set aside.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the garlic and shallots; cook and stir until the shallots have softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the bacon drippings and flour. Cook and stir for 1 minute, then whisk in the heavy cream and thyme. Continue to cook and stir until reduced by 1/3. Add Monterey Jack cheese and Cheddar cheese, stirring until cheeses have melted. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the penne pasta. Transfer the pasta mixture to a 9x13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with the bread crumb mixture.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven until bread crumbs have browned and the sauce is bubbly, about 25 minutes.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Oct 19, 2011

The first time I made this was for out of town visitors the end of this past July, there were no left overs. I've made it twice since then. I use a whole pound of Farmer John thick sliced bacon, it's just necessary as we love bacon. I mix half of it into the dish and rest in the topping. Yes Molly is right, the fat/calorie police won't like it but when they come to my door I shoot 'em. The deliciousness squad on the other hand would love it.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Nov 09, 2011

This was pretty good. I would definitely not give it the amazing reviews that is seems to be getting, though. If I make it again, I would definitely cut back on the garlic. Maybe my garlic cloves were just really big, but the garlic was overwhelming. I would also add the whole pound of bacon and maybe some chicken as well. I liked the idea of the bread crumbs, though. That tasted good. EDIT: I am editing this review and lowering my star rating because it is HORRIBLE left over! I made it for my boyfriend the other night and we didn't eat it all. I literally threw all the leftovers away because when you reheat them they end up sitting in a huge puddle of grease! Totally inedible and DISGUSTING!! If you don't eat it all in one sitting, forget about it!

Sep 15, 2011

This was super delicious! I only made a couple changes which was I used all cheddar cheese, added red pepper flakes and black pepper to the sauce and instead of chopping the bacon I pulsed it in a food processor and mixed it with the panko to make "bacon breadcrumbs." Again, this turned out super delicious and I would definitely make again. Thanks for sharing.

Sep 15, 2011

Recipe Group Selection: 10, September '11 Oh my..........this dish is delicious. The calorie/fat police are not going to like this one - but my husband and I LOVED it. I had to add 3 ounces of another shaped pasta because my penne was only a 13 oz. box. Other than that change I made as written. It was the first time I've used a shallot and panko bread crumbs. The texture is nice and creamy and loaded with flavor. Thanks rolo123 for sharing this one.

Oct 20, 2011

This recipe is fantastic. I took a previous rater's advice and increased the bacon to one pound and added more cheese and also some garlic powder. Also, I added, stirred in lightly 1/2 cup of white wine just before baking.

Aug 02, 2011

This is freaking awesome!! A little time comsuming but totally worth it!! Panko bread crumbs are just the right topping!

Oct 20, 2011

Amazingly delicious! :) a wonderful meal. for those that would like to try this dish and are put off by the nutrition information. there are ways to make it a bit less fattening by using lower fat substitutions. Use common sense and you can make it work. Having said that, there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with enjoying this dish the way it's written. It's superb. I alter for my and my families taste and added a bit of fresh garlic and some basil (which I don't really care for - but the family does :)).

Oct 20, 2011

This was fabulous, calories and all


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  • Calories
  • 686 kcal
  • 34%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 39.7 g
  • 13%
  • Cholesterol
  • 157 mg
  • 52%
  • Fat
  • 53.2 g
  • 82%
  • Fiber
  • 1.5 g
  • 6%
  • Protein
  • 16.8 g
  • 34%
  • Sodium
  • 486 mg
  • 19%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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