Food & Drink

The 8 best mac and cheese dishes in Seattle

Published On 03/12/2014 Published On 03/12/2014
Mac and cheese
Chona Kasinger

There really isn't anything more enjoyable than reading a list of the eight most glorious mac and cheeses in Seattle... except maybe reading a list of things you didn't know about Dick's, or eating said mac and cheese. But other than those things, this list is pretty much it. So without further ado...


Skillet -- Mac & Cheese
This food truck/diner's decidedly Southwestern version of mac and cheese boasts cheddar, Asadero, roasted corn, Anaheim chiles, tomatillos & cilantro bread crumbs, and is served on... guess what? A plate! Just kidding, it comes in a skillet.

Pinky’s Kitchen -- Mac 'n' Cheese Bowls
The Pinky’s menu describes their mac as fusili pasta in a rich, creamy Bechamel made with smoked provolone, sharp cheddar, and topped with a crispy panko crust... but we describe it as the perfect pile of cheese and pasta. Tom-ay-to, tom-ah-to.

Chona Kasinger

Bitterroot BBQ -- Build Your Own Mac & Cheese
Here's the deal at this Ballard BBQ mainstay: you pick two ingredients from Bitterroot’s extensive list of add-ons, including their badass BBQ pulled pork, sliced hot links, bacon lardons, etc., and get the whole she-bang for $10.


Liam’s -- Beecher's World's Best Mac & Cheese
University District
This happy hour-only option (all day Tuesday!) at the Beecher's boss' U-Village bistro boasts kale, Mama Lil's peppers, and cheese from guess which Pike Place curd-slinger.

West 5

West 5 -- Astral Mac & Cheese
West Seattle
This comfort foodery's signature dish is a "commingling of oven-baked pasta and five marvelous cheeses" that is... sorry'boutthis!... out of this world.

Jemil's Big Easy

Jemil’s Big Easy -- Crawfish Mac & Cheese
Prepped by a New Orleans native with serious international cooking chops (he's won awards for his beignets, what have you done?!?), this crawfish-y mac isn't always on the bright yellow truck's menu, but those award-winning beignets are, so you might as well hit their daily spot downtown anyway.

The 5 Point Cafe -- Mac & Cheese Balls
Seattle's signature 24hr dive serves these greasy balls of joy with a side of marinara every happy hour (except the morning one *sad face*) for just $3, which gets you a plate-full of breaded bacon & jalapeno mac and chee... wait, did you say $3?!

Golden Beetle -- Mac & Cheese Mondays
One night a week, Maria Hines' Ballard eatery is letting you choose your own dining adventure by picking a pasta, a sauce (truffle cream, shrimp-parsley pesto, etc.), cheese (Gruyere, smoked Gouda...), meat options like spicy lamb sausage, or even vegetables (though choosing one of those would be worse than confronting the Viking ghost on page 87 of The Cave of Time, so maybe stick with the other stuff).

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1. West 5 4539 California Ave SW, West Seattle, WA 98116 (West Seattle)

A local West Seattle staple, West 5 focuses on quality ingredients and has won zillions of accolades for things ranging from their mac and cheese to their bloody marys.

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2. Skillet Diner 2034 NW 56th St, Seattle, WA 98107 (Ballard)

A food truck-gone-fine establishment in Seattle, serving up amazing New American comfort food, such as sandwiches, cheesy grits with pork belly, and waffles with all sorts of meat on them, and the like. Airy digs and plenty of seating make this a great spot for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

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3. Bitterroot BBQ 5239 Ballard Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107 (Ballard)

Nothing beats the smell that emanates from Bitterroot's custom smoker and fills its reclaimed brick- and wood-laden space. Specializing its own bbq formula they've dubbed "Northwest style," this waterside Old Ballard spot dry rubs their ribs, briskets, roasted chickens, and pulled porks and comes with four house-made sauces: apple- and cola-based sweet, tangy Carolina mustard, spicy chipotle, and garlic vinegar. The tiled bar in the back is the icing on the cake with flights and specialty cocktails from their impressive aged whiskey collection.

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4. Pinky's Kitchen 211 NE 45th St, Seattle, WA 98105 (Wallingford)

Proving sliders are more than just a vehicle from which to dispense hilarious, pithy quips about Jerry O'Connell and that fat bearded dude traveling to a parallel universe where penicillin had not been invented, are the two dudes (one behind Rancho Bravo, the other the former owner of Bizzarro Italian) behind the slider-heavy, BBQ-inspired menu at Pinky's Kitchen, their dispenser of "pig 'n chips", which is also a short-lived spin-off in which Ponch and John compete over chubby women.

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5. Liam's 2685 NE 46th St, Seattle, WA 98105 (University District)

Serving up contemporary American eats like their Braised Lamb Shank, which comes with roasted parsnips, fennel, all in a riesling braise, Liam's sources local ingredients without additives or preservatives.

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6. Golden Beetle 1744 NW Market St, Seattle, WA 98107 (Ballard)

Golden Beetle serves Eastern Mediterranean eats (that're a staggering 95% certified wild/organic) in a 90-seat blue-trimmed space that's lit by custom-cut glass lanterns.

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7. The 5 Point Cafe 415 Cedar St, Seattle, WA 98121 (Belltown)

It's hard to argue with this quirky's dive's tagline: "Alcoholics serving alcoholics since 1929" -- these guys have been serving boozy concoctions way under the radar since just before the end of prohibition, and it shows. The same goes for its heaping breakfasts of chicken & biscuits, plate-sized pancakes, and vegetarian hash and endless selection of classic burgers, sandwiches, and classic American comfort foods that make an ideal pair for a pint or specialty cocktail.



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