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 ;).

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