I am probably strange, but I don’t really like the boxed macaroni and cheese. I can probably count the times I ate it growing up on one hand. My husband (the noodle king) did introduce me to one of Kraft’s specialties that was pretty tasty – they make some 3 cheese kind with mini shells pasta and it has a little something to it. Still… I can only take it so often. Caleb doesn’t share my perspective and somehow manages to slip a box into the menu (or at least into his work lunch) about every couple months.
Regardless…. this recipe, tweaked just a tad, from 100 Days of Real Food is downright delicious and sooooo much more appetizing long-term (in my opinion haha)! Caleb likes it too, although I don’t think anything will convince him to completely give up his boxed macaroni. 😉
Make the cheese sauce while the noodles are cooking and this recipe is on your table in no time!
Whole Wheat Macaroni and Cheese
- 2 cups dried whole-wheat spiral pasta
- About 1 cup diced turkey-ham
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 2 1/2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons whole-wheat flour
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Cook pasta according to package directions. While it’s cooking, saute ham in olive oil and oregano until slightly browned. ALSO, while the noodles are cooking, melt your butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and pepper and stir about 2 minutes or until slightly darkened. Whisk in the milk and stir constantly until mixture reaches desired thickness. Stir in the cheese until melted. Combine cheese mixture with the noodles and ham and serve warm!
*HINT* I know a spoon is slightly easier to clean, but I think using a whisk is worth the extra minute later. It quickly loosens up the flour lumps and keeps them from lumping back up!