Make sure to chop the fresh spinach up before wilting, kids will appreciate that extra step. The spinach is very pretty and melts into the sauce without a strong “spinach” taste either!
Baked Spinach Mac and Cheese
- 14.5 ounce box Barilla Plus elbow macaroni (or similar multi grain/high fiber pasta)
- 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, peeled and diced
- 1 tsp garlic, minced (2 cloves)
- ¼ cup white whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp dry mustard
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 2 cups low-fat milk
- 1 cup lower sodium vegetable broth
- 8 ounces 2% sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- 6 ounce bag baby spinach leaves, chopped
- 2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, cook pasta for time on package. Add the chopped spinach to the colander, pour the hot water and pasta over it. let drain.
Meanwhile preheat the oven to 375° and spray an 8×8″ glass baking dish.
Heat a large skillet over medium, add the oil and onion, sauté until tender. Add the garlic, flour, mustard and pepper, whisk for a couple of minutes. Add the milk and broth, whisk until smooth and thick, add in the cheese, whisking until melted. Take off the heat and season if needed with salt and more pepper. Stir the macaroni and spinach in, pour into the baking dish, packing down. Sprinkle the Parmesan on top, bake for about 20 minutes or until golden on top.
Serves 4 to 6.