Try It & You Could Win a Trip to Phoenix: Johnna’s Smac N’ Cheese

[ 0 ] February 6, 2017 |

This time of the year, it’s all about basketball and junk food. Typically, I dread and look forward to game day foods because I know how many calories I am capable of consuming in a single serving.  Chips, dips, cheese times a thousand and everything else nice, I truly indulge.  This year, I am taking a different approach.  New Year, new goals.  This year, I am subbing out my famed mac n’ cheese with what I like to call “Smac n’ Cheese”.  Paying homage to the base of this dish, the “S” in mac is added because of the spaghetti squash that I have decided to use in lieu of the noodles.

To jazz things up, I decided no game day spread is complete without a little barbecue flavor, so I added in Curly’s RoadTrip Eats Alabama Style.  Easy to find at your local grocer in the refrigerated meat case, Curly’s comes fully cooked and seasoned so half the battle was won when I added it into my Smac n’ Cheese.  A little cumin (because I gotta have it), some cheddar cheese later and voila!  Folks, I think we have a new game day masterpiece in the making.  Super easy to make, this recipe requires the least amount of your energy on food prep for any get-together.  Check out the easy breezy steps below.

Johnna’s Smac n’ Cheese








1 spaghetti squash

2 cups shredded mild (or sharp) cheddar cheese

½ cup milk

1 (12 oz.) package Curly’s RoadTrip Eats Alabama Style

Salt and Pepper to taste (white pepper preferable)

¼ tsp. Cumin

½ tsp. Garlic Powder

Spaghetti Squash Prep:

Prep spaghetti squash by preheating the oven to 375 degrees.  Coat the bottom of a baking dish with olive oil and cut the squash lengthwise.  Scoop out the seeds and coat the face of the squash (flat side) with more olive oil.  Place the squash face down in the baking dish and add about ½ cup of water to the bottom of the baking dish.  Put in the oven for 35-45 minutes, remove and allow it to cool for about 10 minutes.  Scrape the strands out of the squash into a baking dish.  Using a paper towel, pat down the strands to extract as much water as you can from them.

Smac N’ Cheese Prep:

Add the milk to a small saucepan and cook on the stove on Medium-High heat until it comes to a boil.  Gradually whisk in 1 cup of the cheese into the milk, lower the heat to medium until all of the cheese and milk are combined forming a thick consistency.  Add to the squash in the baking dish and combine.  Add the salt, pepper, cumin and garlic powder to the baking dish and combine.  Sprinkle ½ cup of the cheddar cheese on top and bake in the oven at 375 degrees for 25 minutes.  Remove and add the last of the cheese (1/2 cup) to the top and bake for another 5 minutes or until fully melted.  Remove from oven and serve!

*Johnna’s Tip:  I am lazy when it comes to spaghetti squash prep in the oven so I almost always use the microwave for this part of the process which makes this recipe 10x easier than it already is.  For microwave spaghetti squash prep:  Heat the whole squash in the microwave for 10 minutes, carefully remove and cut in half lengthwise.  Spoon out the seeds and lay the squash face down on a microwave safe dish.  Add ½ cup of water to the dish and microwave for 10 minutes.  Remove, allow to cool for 10 minutes and using a fork, scrape out the strands.  Done and done.

Feeling this recipe?  VOTE for it as your favorite recipe to have a chance to win in Curly’s BBQ Showdown Sweepstakes!!  If you vote, you gain an entry for a chance to win a trip for two to Phoenix for the game on April 3rd.  ENTER HERE.  Good luck and wish us luck, we want winners all around for JKGF!

You can also find more tasty Curly’s recipes at

*Post sponsored by Curly's BBQ.

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Category: appetizers, baked, dips, health concious, main dish, Recipes, side dish

About the Author ()

Johnna French is a Harlem NY native with deep roots in Panama, Washington, DC and North Carolina. All four places have heavily influenced her life and the foods she loves today. After graduating Howard University School of Law and beginning her life as a young professional in the city she was led to start Johnna Knows Good Food in November 2007 to keep family, friends and colleagues updated on where to go and what to eat while dining in the nation’s capitol. French, who still practices law, leads a team of three writers to cover the ever expanding Washington, DC food scene. French has been featured in print and television, appearing in Washingtonian Magazine and is a regular contributor to various local TV affiliates including WUSA 9, FOX 5 DC and WJLA (ABC Affiliate) News Channel 8. During the 2016-2017 football season, Johnna aired on Comcast Sports Mid-Atlantic (CSN) show, Redskins Life, as the weekly tailgate host. Johnna is currently a regular contributor to the FOX Baltimore Weekend morning show.

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