Monday, April 30, 2012

Healthy Version of Mac & Cheese!

YUMMY!!!! This is just 1 of many great recipes we use to maintain a healthy lifestyle! Check out our FREE E-Cookbook, Eating Healthy, Cheap and Easy!!!

3 tablespoons plain dry breadcrumbs, (see Tip)
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1 16-ounce or 10-ounce package frozen spinach, thawed
1 3/4 cups skim milk, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose whole wheat flour
8 oz. shredded Cobat's 50% less fat Sharp Cheddar cheese
1 cup fat free cottage cheese
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4-1/2 teaspoon salt Freshly ground pepper, to taste
8 ounces (2 cups) whole-wheat elbow macaroni, or penne

  1. Put a large pot of water on to boil. Preheat oven to 450°F. Coat an baking dish with cooking spray. I used a deep Corningware oval shaped one.
  2. Mix breadcrumbs, oil and paprika in a small bowl.
  3. Place spinach in a fine-mesh strainer and press out excess moisture.
  4. Heat 1 1/2 cups milk in a large heavy saucepan over medium-high heat until steaming. Whisk remaining 1/4 cup milk and flour in a small bowl until smooth; add to the hot milk and cook, whisking constantly, until the sauce simmers and thickens, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in Cheddar until melted. Stir in cottage cheese, nutmeg, salt and pepper.
  5. Cook pasta for 4 minutes, or until not quite tender. (It will continue to cook during baking.) Drain and add to the cheese sauce; mix well.
  6. Spread half the pasta mixture in the prepared baking dish. Spoon the spinach on top. Top with the remaining pasta; sprinkle with the breadcrumb mixture. Bake the casserole until bubbly and golden, 20 to 30 minutes.

Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 4. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator, if necessary, then bake for 35 to 45 minutes.

Homemade Breadcrumb Tip: To make fresh breadcrumbs. Tear whole wheat bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. One slice of bread makes about 1/2 cup fresh crumbs.  Feel free to season.

Makes 6 Servings

Nutrition Facts per serving
Calories - 300
Fat - 7g
Carb - 42g
Protein - 25g
Fiber - 5g

Check out our FREE E-Cookbook, Eating Healthy, Cheap and Easy!!!

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