Eat Your Veggies Mac & Cheese

Now that Anderson is eating much of what we are I'm inspired to be done with the baby food and make meals that are good for us, but also good for him.  I'm conscious of getting veggies in his diet, as any Mom would, and was intrigued when I saw this mac and cheese recipe with loads of spinach and peas in it.

Thanks to Trader Joe's I ended up tweaking the original recipe some and used veggie pasta, white cheddar over American cheese, and a whole 16 ounce bag of frozen spinach as opposed to the 10 ounces it called for.

I made this during nap time so that when 5:30 rolled around I wasn't going to be trying to make a cheese sauce with a little one standing at my feet.  When a recipe says, "Stir constantly for 2 minutes" that's less likely to happen with a baby in tow.  A lot can happen in 2 minutes!

I served this up to a 2, 4, and 5 year old today and they liked it as well.  It's a great way to get spinach in there even if it means hiding it amongst pasta and homemade cheese sauce.  I hope you and your kids enjoy this one!

{Recipe adapted from Good Housekeeping}

{Ingredients You'll Need}

  • 2 T. cornstarch
  • 2 1/4 cups 2% milk
  • 12 ounces veggie pasta or any small macaroni like pasta
  • 12 ounces cheddar cheese of your choice- I used a white cheddar, cut into small chunks or grated
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 16 ounces frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 10 ounces frozen peas, thawed
1.  Heat a saucepan with water for your pasta.  In another saucepan whisk cornstarch and 1/4 cup milk until it's smooth over medium-high heat then gradually add in the rest of your milk.  Bring it to a boil and whisk constantly for 2 minutes while it thickens.  Reduce the heat to medium-low and add cheese in two batches.  

2.  Once your water boils in the larger pot start the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain and set aside until your cheese sauce is complete!

3.  Once your cheese has been incorporated into the milk sprinkle in the nutmeg and season with salt and pepper.  Pour the sauce over the cooked pasta in a large bowl then toss in the spinach and peas.  Stir until everything is combined and serve warm!

1 comment

  1. looks so yummy! when i make annies mac and cheese i add peas and tuna to give it a bit more of a protein punch - sometimes spinach too! but i am loving your variation!