The Fast Food Mac & Cheese Anthony Bourdain Loved On The Down Low

Anthony Bourdain liked his mac and cheese, but not the gourmet type. Bourdain was way too down to earth for elitist mac and cheese. In fact, when sharing his own recipe with Splendid Table for this ultimate comfort food, he wrote a concise and colorful plea to keep lobster and truffles away from this dish. This may explain why Bourdain had a not-so-secret fetish for Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen's mac and cheese

During an interview between himself and Jacques Pepin for 92NY, Bourdain revealed he would put on a hoodie and "sneak" into his local Popeyes on the low down, not for the chicken but for the "nasty macaroni and cheese." He went on to describe this menu item as a mac and cheese that doesn't contain "anything that resembles cheese," but conceded, "I just love that stuff." And that wasn't the only time Bourdain admitted his love for this fast food chain's mac and cheese.

A morning craving

In 2018, Bourdain took a People magazine reporter along to witness his admiration for all of Popeyes' culinary goodness. Feasting on its famous spicy chicken, biscuits, and gravy, Dr. Pepper, and, of course, mac and cheese, Bourdain stated, "To me, Popeyes is exotica. I was eating noodles and roast goose and Chinese food for the past 10 days. So to be back and eat some Americana food, well, I will weep with gratitude at macaroni and cheese." But why Popeyes mac and cheese?

Well, as it turns out, sometimes it wasn't from Popeyes. During a Reddit: Ask Me Anything, Bourdain said that if he couldn't get to the Louisiana eatery, he would go to "the Colonel," also known as KFC. Bourdain enjoyed versions of this dish prepared at quick-service restaurants — and not always during normal hours. Instead, his hankerings for mac and cheese often hit him in the mornings. "During the morning I get these horrendous cravings for Popeye's mac and cheese," he admitted.