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Friday, November 03 2017

Ooey-gooey cheese joins with yummy pasta to make these one-of-a-kind dinners that'll please a crowd. Each macaroni and cheese dinners have a unique twist like lobster, pumpkin, or hot sauce to up the flavor. Yeah, these mac and cheese meals definitely didn't come from a box meal.


12 - ounces dried penne pasta
1 - cup fresh green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 - cup broccoli florets
2 - tablespoons vegetable oil
4 - ounces button mushrooms, halved
1/3 - cup chopped red sweet pepper
1 - pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-size pieces
1 - 2 - teaspoons dried Italian seasoning or other herb blend, crushed
1/8 - teaspoon salt
1/8 - teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4- cup butter
1/3 - cup chopped onion (1 medium)
1 - clove garlic, minced
1/4 - cup all-purpose flour
3 - tablespoons tomato paste
4 1/2 - cups milk
1 1/2 - cups shredded cheddar or Swiss cheese (8 ounces)
6 - ounces process American or Swiss cheese, torn (2 cups)
Salt - Ground black pepper
4 - ounces purchased croutons (2 cups), coarsely crushed


Cook pasta according to package directions, adding green beans and broccoli the last 2 minutes; drain. Rinse with cold water; drain again. Return pasta to pan.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add mushrooms, red peppers and chicken. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Cook and stir until chicken is no longer pink and vegetables are tender. Add chicken to pasta in pan.

For cheese sauce, in a large saucepan melt the 1/4 cup butter over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; cook and stir until tender. Stir in flour, then tomato paste. Gradually stir in milk. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly; reduce heat. Gradually stir in cheddar and American cheeses until nearly melted. Remove from heat; season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Add cheese sauce to pasta mixture, stirring to coat.

Spoon pasta mixture into a 3 quart baking dish. Cover baking dish with plastic wrap, then with foil. Freeze for up to 4 months.
To serve, thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove plastic wrap; recover with foil. Bake about 1 hour 15 minutes, or until heated through, stirring every 30 minutes. Top with crushed croutons.

NUTRITION FACTS (Chicken Vegetable Mac and Cheese)

Per serving: 579 kcal , 29 g fat (14 g sat. fat , 4 g polyunsaturated fat , 7 g monounsaturated fat ), 111 mg chol. , 890 mg sodium , 47 g carb. , 3 g fiber , 10 g sugar , 44 g pro.

Posted by: AT 02:16 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email

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