Sunday, April 7, 2013

Recipe Review–BLT Mac & Cheese

I’ve been on the hunt for a “skinny” version of macaroni and cheese for a long time.  I tried adding butternut squash into the cheese sauce and wasn’t really a fan.  We tried making sauce with just Laughing Cow wedges and for some reason they didn’t melt well, hence a clumpy mess.  So when I found this recipe, I figured it was worth a try, especially since I always love finding new ways to incorporate more veggies into the main dish. 


The BLT Mac & Cheese did not disappoint!  Original recipe can be found here.  It was SO good – lots of veggies are hidden in with the pasta, and the cheese covers the veggies well so you don’t taste the spinach and the squash doesn’t have a strong flavor, either.  Things I changed:

  • I used a cup of shredded reduced fat (2% milk) sharp cheddar cheese instead of the slices.  I mixed this with the sour cream and Laughing Cow wedges in the pot that I used to cook the pasta in and the mixture came out perfect – creamy and no lumps.  I heated it for about 2-3 minutes over very low heat and kept stirring to prevent it from burning. 
  • I used light sour cream instead of fat-free.  Fat free sour cream always tastes “blah” to me.
  • I only had one summer squash on hand, so that was half of what the recipe called for.  I think this was actually the perfect amount – 2 full squashes may have been too much.
  • I had rotini instead of penne, and the sauce still coated everything fine.
  • I was nervous about all the spinach as hubby is slowly learning that you really can’t taste it when mixing with other items.  I added about 1 1/2 cups of chopped leaves (so half of what the recipe called for).

Things I would change the next time I make this:

  • Per hubby’s request, add more bacon.  I will add one more slice of turkey bacon and crumble them into smaller pieces.
  • Add more tomato – two medium tomatoes should work.
  • There was plenty of sauce to coat the pasta and veggies so for next time I will reduce the amount of shredded cheese to 3/4 cup.
  • Reduce amount of pasta to one cup – with all the squash there’s not much of a need for the pasta.
  • Add more spinach – about 2 cups total should be fine.

This was fairly easy to make (can be a weeknight meal), but it’s not a one pot or one skillet meal.  Overall the outcome was well worth the clean up!  So glad to have finally found a recipe that keeps the awesome cheesiness factor but sneaks in some veggies.  It was great the next day as lunch leftovers, too.  This can be a vegetarian meal with omitting the bacon crumbles, but I liked how the bacon added some saltiness that mixed well with the sweetness of the squash.





1 comment:

  1. Ooh I love this!!! Squash is so good I think I'll have to try this. And who doesn't love bacon!?


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