What’s the first thing you think when you hear quick and healthy meals? I bet it’s not mac n cheese. But guess what? That’s all about to change. This healthy macaroni and cheese recipe is nutritious AND delicious. The trick? A lighter sauce thanks to a sneaky dose of pureed pumpkin (I won’t tell if you don’t) and some green veggies for an extra boost of healthy. And don’t worry, I haven’t left out the cheese. I mean cheese is life and well it wouldn’t be mac n cheese without out it…YUM!
And like all of my recipes, this one is super quick and easy. It takes less than 25 minutes. I know, right? That’s only 10 minutes more than that seriously unhealthy boxed stuff. I know which one I’d prefer for dinner. So next time you’re craving the ultimate comfort food, give this healthy macaroni and cheese recipe a shot. You’ll never eat the boxed stuff again…promise!
Healthy Macaroni and Cheese Recipe
Some sneaky vegetables make this easy mac n cheese recipe healthy AND delicious
- 200g macaroni (regular or gluten free)
- 1 ½ cups butternut pumpkin (squash)
- 1 head broccoli
- ¼ cup milk
- ½ tsp smoky paprika
- ½ cup grated tasty cheese
- 2 tbs grated parmesan
- 2 cups mixed leaves to serve
- Step 1 Boil the kettle, fill a medium saucepan with boiling water and bring back to boil. Add the macaroni to the saucepan and cook according to packet directions (about 9-10 minutes).
- Step 2 While you are waiting for the water to boil, chop the pumpkin into small pieces (the smaller the better). Place the chopped pumpkin into a steamer insert and cover with a lid. Once the macaroni is cooking place the steamer on top of the saucepan. You may need to turn down the heat so the water doesn’t boil over.
- Step 3 While the pumpkin and pasta are cooking, cut the broccoli into small florets, and when the pasta has about 2 minutes left to cook add the broccoli.
- Step 4 When the pasta is ready, drain the pasta and broccoli. Set aside.
- Step 5 Remove the pumpkin from the steamer, and transfer it into the saucepan you used to cook the pasta. Add the milk and smoky paprika, then season with salt and pepper. Use a stick blender to puree until the pumpkin is smooth and creamy. Stir in the tasty cheese until it melts.
- Step 6 Now add the pasta and broccoli to the saucepan and stir until the macaroni is coated with sauce.
- Step 7 Transfer the macaroni and cheese to a medium sized baking dish or 2 large ramekins and sprinkle with parmesan. Place under the oven grill for 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
- Step 8 Serve with mixed leaves.
- Making this recipe gluten free is easy. Just use your favourite gluten free pasta, instead of regular macaroni.
- Get a jump on the kitchen clean-up. Wash your dishes while the macaroni and cheese is under the grill.
- Want to make this recipe even quicker to cook? Skip putting the macaroni and cheese under the grill and just stir the parmesan in with the tasty cheese.
If you make my healthy macaroni and cheese recipe, remember to share it with me on Instagram. I love seeing and sharing your creations. Find me at @youtotallygotthis and use the hashtag #youtotallygotthis so I can find you!