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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Pumpkin Invades Everything = Even Mac and Cheese

I have to share this recipe because

  1. It's fall and fall means pumpkin
  2. It's mac and cheese, plus
  3. Kelly loves this recipe - as in, he put it on The List.

So seriously...this mac and cheese is so cheesy and so creamy. It's everything you want in a mac and cheese when you feel sad or cold or lonely or simply in the mood for cheese. In other words: All the time.

But here's the secret - it's not really very cheesy. It only tastes that way. The secret to the creamy is a fall-favorite: PUMPKIN.

Sure, the recipe calls for butternut squash. But why use that when pumpkin is everywhere?

When I made this for dinner, Kelly declared that it was his favorite mac and cheese ever. Little did he know (until I told him) that it's lower calorie and lower cheesy.

And he still liked it - and me - after learning that.

If that isn't a reason to make this, I don't know what is.

One-Pan Broccoli and Bacon Mac and Cheese
Source: Cooking Light
Instructions: As modified by me

  • 1/4 c lower fat bacon bits
  • 1 T. minced garlic
  • 2 c low sodium chicken stock
  • 1 c fat-free milk
  • 10 oz pumpkin puree
  • 10 oz elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • 3 c frozen chopped broccoli florets
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 t freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 c cheddar cheese, shredded and divided

Heat bacon bits over medium heat until crispy (about 1 minute). Remove from pan. Saute garlic over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add stock, milk, and pumpkin to pan; bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Add pasta; cover, ­reduce heat, and ­simmer 5 minutes, ­stirring occasionally. Stir in broccoli; cover and cook 3 minutes or until pasta is done and sauce is thickened. Stir in salt, pepper and half of cheese. Sprinkle bacon and remaining cheese on top. Cover and let stand 1 minute.

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