Sunday, November 6, 2011

Creamy Macaroni and Cheese

My sister finally became a follower of my bog and she told me I needed a vegetarian recipe?? So, I just happen to have this fabulous mac-n-cheese recipe that I can put on here. I love mac-n-cheese but it doesn't usually like the figure. I found this recipe that used a few different ingredients and was great for the figure and delicious. It may seem a little time consuming but totally worth it in the end. There are some short cuts you can take for this recipe like buying frozen pre cut squash. You can also change up the cheese selection if you would like. The first time I made it I used Smoked Gouda for one of the cheese selections and it was amazing!

Creamy, Light Macaroni and Cheese

Serves 8 (1 1/3 cup per serving)

  • 3 cups cubed peeled butternut squash (about 1 [1-pound] squash) (Can also buy frozen)
  • 1 1/4 cups fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth 
  • 1 1/2 cups fat-free milk 
  • garlic cloves or more if you like garlic
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
  • 2 tablespoons fat-free Greek yogurt 
  • 1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) shredded Gruyère cheese
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) grated pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1/4 cup (1 ounce) finely grated fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided
  • 1 pound uncooked cavatappi ( I used Rigatoni)
  • Cooking spray 
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil 
  • 1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) 
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


  • 1. Preheat oven to 375°.
  • 2. Combine squash, broth, milk, and garlic in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium, and simmer until squash is tender when pierced with a fork, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • 3. Place the hot squash mixture in a blender. Add salt, pepper, and Greek yogurt. Remove the center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Place blended squash mixture in a bowl; stir in Gruyère, pecorino Romano, and 2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano. Stir until combined.
  • 4. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain well. Add pasta to squash mixture, and stir until combined. Spread mixture evenly into a 13 x 9-inch glass or ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray.
  • 5. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add panko, and cook for 2 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from heat; stir in remaining 2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Sprinkle evenly over the hot pasta mixture. Lightly coat topping with cooking spray.
  • 6. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until bubbly. Sprinkle with parsley, and serve immediately.
  • As you can see I did not use the panko crumbs on top of this recipe. It still tastes just as amazing. I like to portion out servings and freeze them for an easy quick supper. Hope you enjoy this amazingly creamy recipe!

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