Broccoli and cheddar mac and cheese

Total Time
25 min
10 min
15 min
Yes, you can have your mac and cheese and eat it too, especially when it is packed with a serving or two of vegetables. Extra-sharp cheddar and Parmesan cheeses add loads of flavor to classic bechamel sauce and a rich, creamy texture that clings to the macaroni and broccoli florets. Japanese breadcrumbs, or panko, adds a tempura-like crunch to the top of this casserole as it crisps beneath the broiler. Add a side salad of crunchy greens, tomato wedges, and shaved radishes dressed with a light vinaigrette and you have a deliciously satisfying vegetarian meal.


Uncooked whole wheat elbow macaroni

1½ cup(s)


4 cup(s), chopped, small florets

Olive oil

2 Tbsp


1 clove(s), minced

All-purpose flour

2 Tbsp

1% low fat milk

2 cup(s), (1%)

Shredded cheddar cheese

4 oz, extra- sharp (1 cup)

Grated Parmesan cheese

5 Tbsp

Dijon mustard

1 tsp

Table salt

1 tsp

Cayenne pepper


Whole wheat panko breadcrumbs

¼ cup(s)

Cooking spray

2 spray(s)


  1. Spray 2-quart flameproof baking dish with nonstick spray.
  2. Cook macaroni according to package directions, adding broccoli during last 2 minutes of cooking time. Drain well.
  3. Meanwhile, to make sauce, heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add flour and cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk. Cook, whisking often, until mixture comes to boil and thickens, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat and add Cheddar, 4 tablespoons of Parmesan, mustard, salt, and cayenne. Stir until cheese melts.
  4. Preheat broiler.
  5. Add broccoli and macaroni to sauce. Stir to combine and pour into prepared baking dish. Stir together panko and remaining 1 tablespoon Parmesan in small bowl; sprinkle evenly over pasta. Lightly spray topping with nonstick spray. Broil 6 inches from heat until crumbs are lightly browned, about 3 minutes.
  6. Per serving: 1 cup