Who doesn’t love a comfy mac-n-cheese casserole? But most of us don’t need the extra butter, flour, cream and fattening cheese in our diets (although all of that does make a killer mac-n-cheese). I like to lighten up my Mama’s classic mac-n-cheese and then toss in whatever meat and veggies I have on hand. Once you have the technique down of making the cheese sauce, the extra ingredient possibilities are endless 🙂
The following serves 4 (compliments of This Girl’s Gotta Eat):
- 1 box whole wheat pasta, such as penne or macaroni
- Half an onion, sliced
- 1 head broccoli, cut into small florets
- 1 package turkey kielbasa, sliced
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp whole wheat flour
- 1/2 tsp dried mustard
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken stock
- 1/4 cup non-fat half and half
- 1 cup low-fat shredded cheese (cheddar or mozzarella)
Preheat oven to 375.
In a large skillet cook the sliced onions, kielbasa and broccoli florets until they start to soften slightly, turning occasionally for a few minutes. Remove from heat,
Bring a pot of water to boil, add salt and cook pasta to al dente according to package instructions.
Heat olive oil in a saucepan – remove from heat and whisk in the flour and dried mustard. Turn heat back on and add chicken stock and non-fat half and half, whisking constantly – stir until sauce thickens a little and is smooth. Next add the shredded cheese. Whisk the sauce with the added cheese until melted, stirring occasionally.
In a large casserole dish sprayed with non-stick spray, combine the sauce with the cooked pasta, broccoli and kielbasa until well mixed.
Dust the top with paprika and bake uncovered at 375 for about 20-25 minutes, until bubbly and browned on top.
Because this is a lightened up version, it won’t be super cheesy or creamy, but it will still be delicious…and of course, healthier for you! Serve with a side salad to round out the meal and enjoy!