Who loves macaroni and cheese?
I know I do.
I was pawing through Ellie Krieger’s book, The Food You Crave, looking for meals for the week. I like this book a lot, the food tastes good and I don’t feel guilty about eating anything I make from it. My friend gave me this book, and I can’t remember if she wanted it back or not. So… I’m calling it mine. Ha!
When I saw macaroni and cheese in here I wasn’t sure why it was included… until I read the ingredient list. Butternut squash! Well, she calls it winter squash, but c’mon… butternut squash.
It was easy enough to make on a week night (I like to keep my weeknight meals simple and fairly quick) and lasted us for a couple of days AND… a 2 cup serving is only 390 calories. Awesome.
Macaroni and Four Cheeses from “The Food you Crave” by Ellie Krieger
- 16 oz elbow macaroni (I used a different kind)
- 2 10 oz packages frozen pureed winter squash (I bought 20oz frozen butternut, boiled it and mashed it with a potato masher)
- 2 cups lowfat milk (I used whole… did I even follow this recipe?)
- 1 1/3 cups grated extra sharp cheddar cheese (4 oz)
- 2/3 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese (2 oz)
- 1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons bread crumbs
- 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- Prehead oven to 375. Coat a 9×13 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Or butter. I heard that someone did that and it came out fine.
- Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and transfer to prepared baking dish.
- Place frozen squash and milk in a large saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, til squash is defrosted. Or, if you’ve already pureed it, just mix it with the milk here. Cook til mixture is almost simmering.
- Remove pan from heat and stir in the cheddar, Jack cheese, ricotta, salt, mustard, and cayenne. Pour over macaroni and stir to comibine.
- Combine bread crumbs, Parmesan, and oil in a small bowl, sprinkle over the top of the macaroni and cheese. Bake until cheese around edges is bubbling, about 20 mins, then broil 3 minutes to crisp and brown the top.
That’s it! This is also a great way to sneak a vegetable in if you have finicky eaters in your house… you don’t even need to tell them, because you can’t even taste it. I really tasted the ricotta and mustard the most. Of course, you’re going to want to tell them while they’re eating it, but then they might not trust you again, and make that face like you forced them to eat something healthy, and then nobody wins. Just keep it to yourself.
Do you have any non-healthy dishes that have been turned healthy?