Baked Pumpkin Mac & Cheese

by Charlie Rioux on April 24, 2012

Hello comfort food.

If you want to hide vegetables from your kids. Or from yourself. Or from your husband. Make this now. Because it’s mac & cheese, with veggies… and it tastes even BETTER than regular mac & cheese!

Comfort food made healthier? I’m in!

How did I think of this awesome meal?

Sometimes, I buy Annie’s mac & cheese so I can have a quick dinner on hand. When I make it, I try to add something to make it into a “real meal”. Once, I added pumpkin puree and sauteed onion. It was soooo good! I had to make a homemade mac & cheese with pumpkin puree!

P.S. I tried something else with Annie’s mac & cheese that was sooo good I have to make it into a homemade mac & cheese ;).

Baked Pumpkin Mac & Cheese

Adaptation of Easy Baked Mac & Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 1 package (375 g) whole wheat elbow macaroni
  • 2 slices of bread (I used sprouted whole wheat)
  • 3 tbsp softened butter (or non-hydrogenated margarine), divided
  • 1 tbsp flour (I used whole wheat)
  • 1 cup warm milk (I used 1%)
  • 1/2 package Maclaren’s Imperial Sharp Cold Pack Cheddar
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp salted herbs, or salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese of your choice (I used Oka Classique)
  • Paprika

Directions: Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Cook onion until it starts to brown. Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a big pot of water to a boil and cook macaroni according to package instructions.
Meanwhile, process the two slices of bread in a food processor until coarse crumbs start to form. Add 2 tbsp softened butter and process until combined. Set aside.

In a large saucepan, melt remaining 1 tbsp butter over medium heat. Add flour and stir with a whisk until it starts to bubble. Whisk in milk, then stir constantly until sauce begins to thicken, about 5 minutes.
Add cheese and stir until completely melted. Add pumpkin, nutmeg and salted herbs. Toss the drained macaroni and cooked onions in the sauce.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Transfer macaroni 4 individual baking dishes. Top with shredded cheese, then with bread crumbs and sprinkle with paprika. Bake for 30 minutes and serve immediately.

Serves 4

I made this recipe for girl’s night at my place. On Thursday. On Monday, I was making it again (all for me :D). This mac & cheese is addictive.

If you already have a favorite mac & cheese recipe, just add some pumpkin and onion next time you make it ;).

{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef April 24, 2012 at 8:19 PM

i’m always looking for new ways to use pumpkin, and this sounds like the just the thing! :)

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Kelsey @ K&K Test Kitchen April 24, 2012 at 9:56 PM

Yes! I have a cup of pumpkin leftover from making granola the other day, and now I know what to do with it!

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Jen at The Three Little Piglets April 24, 2012 at 10:10 PM

I do the same exact thing and after 16 years my husband has yet to figure out why my mac and cheese tastes so much better than everybody else’s! What he doesn’t know won’t hurt him!

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Kim Bee April 24, 2012 at 11:32 PM

I think my hubs and son would go wild for this one. It just looks so yummy.

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Choc Chip Uru April 25, 2012 at 12:19 AM

That mac n cheese looks super delicious – I can imagine it would be cheesy but still healthy :D

Cheers
Choc Chip Uru

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Cindy April 25, 2012 at 5:00 AM

Wow, this looks delicious. I think that there would be fights for any leftovers with this recipe, now to try it out.

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Myrtle April 25, 2012 at 5:19 AM

I love Mac and Cheese but I am not sure yet if this is delicious.. I hope when I try this my family, especially my kids would love it..

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Tiffany April 25, 2012 at 3:01 PM

What a lovely way to pack in extra veggies!

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torviewtoronto and createwithmom April 25, 2012 at 10:44 PM

lovely combination

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Ashleen Moreen April 26, 2012 at 12:14 AM

That is a sort of great combination! It looks good and I love to taste it. By the way, thanks for the recipe. :)

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Terrance April 26, 2012 at 4:03 AM

A very sneaky, but effective way of helping the kids to appreciate vegetables. I have tried doing this before and no one noticed the difference.

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Lisa @ Snappy Gourmet April 26, 2012 at 11:03 AM

I love pumpkin mac & cheese! I could eat it year round!

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Nica May 1, 2012 at 7:37 AM

I love this idea here.. I hope I can try this too maybe this weekend and perfect for birthday celebration..

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Ariana May 7, 2012 at 6:52 AM

That is one great cooking idea. It is really tough to make kids eat veggies; this recipe is worth giving a try. I hope it works.

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Jeanie May 10, 2012 at 10:47 PM

I eat this before…Taste really good thanks for sharing..Thanks for the recipe..

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Jhenny May 11, 2012 at 4:52 AM

I have never tried this before and I think this weekend I will give this a try as well.. Thanks for the recipe here..

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Cynthia May 14, 2012 at 3:07 AM

For a mom like me, recipes like this is a life-saver. This will enable me to feed my child vegetables that are important to their health.

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Levi Steven May 15, 2012 at 11:53 AM

I am thinking different.I believe the positive side of this recipe,so i want to make it myself for get the taste of this great recipe when i want.

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Grace Becker May 16, 2012 at 1:19 PM

I am a veggie lover and this combination will do me great. I am glad that you shared the recipe. I am hoping to prepare it sometime soon.

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Julio May 17, 2012 at 7:00 AM

I guess I will share this recipe to my wife; she is struggling in finding recipes that will make our kids appreciate veggies. Thanks for this!

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Kimberly June 6, 2012 at 11:08 PM

I love this recipe. This looks so good and promising for me. I love macaronis a lot.

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eryka September 6, 2012 at 3:09 PM

That seriously looks SINFUL! I love pumpkin, but the hubby could care less for it, so maybe I’ll see if i can pull one over on him and make him fall in love with your version. Thanks for sharing!

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