If I want to rate a successful recipe, I need only see how the Teen reacts to it. He had two helpings, ate all the leftovers and has bugged me since making it – that I need to make it again. And that he liked the pumpkin flavor. Today’s recipe comes from a new cookbook, Eat Skinny, Be Skinny: 100 Wholesome and Delicious Recipes Under 300 Calories, which came out in April of this year. The premise of the book is 100 recipes with every serving being under 300 calories.
Warming, comfort food. Delicious. The original recipe I doubled (the Teen can eat 8 ounces pasta if left alone….), I left the panko crumbs off the top and used whole milk instead of a mixture of milks called for. Not huge changes, just personal preferences.
Baked Pumpkin Mac ‘N Cheese (As adapted from paged 222-223)
- 16 ounces small pasta shapes
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- 4 ounces lower fat cream cheese
- 15 ounce can pumpkin puree
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- Ground black pepper
- Salt, to taste, if desired
- 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice, divided
- ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
Lightly oil a 9×13″ glass baking dish. Preheat oven to 350°.
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil, cook pasta as directed on package, taking off a minute early, drain and return to pot.
Meanwhile, heat a saucepan over medium. Melt butter, whisk in flour, letting cook for a few minutes. Slowly whisk in milk, till smooth, then add in cream cheese and pumpkin puree, whisking in. Let cook, stirring often, until it starts to bubble and is thickened. Stir in cheddar and mozzarella cheeses and 1½ tsp of the pumpkin pie spice, whisking until melted. Take off the heat, season to taste with pepper and salt.
Pour sauce over hot pasta, toss to coat. Spread in prepared pan. Toss Parmesan cheese with remaining pie spice, sprinkle over the pasta. Bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
Serves 4 to 8, depending on appetite.
FTC Disclosure: We received an advance copy for review.