Super Creamy Mac and Cheese

6
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep
45 min
Cook
45 min
Serves
8
Difficulty
Easy
Pureed cauliflower and carrots add wonderful creaminess to the sauce in this lightened up version of mac and cheese.

Ingredients

salted butter

1 tsp

WW Reduced fat shredded Mexican style blend cheese

½ cup(s)

panko breadcrumbs

cup(s)

grated Pecorino Romano cheese

2 Tbsp

uncooked cauliflower

1 head(s), large, (2 lbs)

uncooked carrot(s)

4 medium, thinly sliced

fat free reduced sodium vegetable broth

1 cup(s)

WW Whipped cream cheese spread

¼ cup(s)

Dijon Mustard

1½ tsp

Gruyère cheese

1½ oz, shredded (1/4 cup)

table salt

1 tsp

hot pepper sauce

¼ tsp

uncooked macaroni

8 oz

cooking spray

2 spray(s)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Bring a large saucepot of salted water to a boil.
  2. Melt butter in a medium skillet over medium heat; add panko and cook, stirring occasionally, until toasted, 4 minutes. Transfer to small bowl and let cool; stir in Pecorino and set aside.
  3. Cut 3 cups small florets from cauliflower; set aside. Cut remaining cauliflower (including stem) into 2-inch pieces. Add cauliflower pieces and carrots to boiling water; cook until very tender, 10–12 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, combine broth, cream cheese, mustard, 1/4 c Cheddar, Gruyère, salt and pepper sauce in a large blender. With a large slotted spoon, transfer cooked vegetables to blender; puree into a creamy sauce.
  5. Add pasta to same pot of boiling water; cook half the time of package directions, adding reserved cauliflower florets during last minute of cooking. Drain pasta and cauliflower; return to pot and stir in pureed sauce.
  6. Coat a 2 1/2-quart shallow baking dish with cooking spray; spoon pasta mixture into prepared pan in an even layer. Sprinkle dish with remaining 1/4 c Cheddar and reserved crumb mixture; bake until golden on top, 25–30 minutes.
  7. Serving size: 1 c

Notes

Add extra cooked cauliflower florets to the pasta mixture if you desire.

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