Sweet Potato Mac and Cheese Bake
Mac and cheese is a meatless meal that most people love, but how can it be more nutritious? By using whole wheat noodles and adding sweet potato into the cheese mixture, this recipe from Tawnie of Kroll’s Korner transforms regular mac and cheese into a nutritious and delicious option.
Cooking Tip of the Week:
For a recipe such as this one, where you have a lot of different activities happening at once, measure out and prepare all ingredients before combining them or starting to cook them over heat.
Food for Thought:
We have lots of different options when it comes to pasta. You can choose different shapes and colors, and also select different ingredients. Whole grain pasta has more of the nutrients that keep us healthy.
Family Dinner Conversation Starter:
What inventions do you predict we will have in the future?
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 13 oz. elbow macaroni noodles (whole wheat or gluten free if preferred)
- 1/2 large white onion, diced
- 2 cups chopped fresh spinach
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- 3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 4 tbsp. all purpose flour
- 2 cups fat free milk or plant-based milk
- 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp. red pepper chili flakes
- 6 oz. four cheese blend (or sharp white cheddar) or shredded dairy-free cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- For the breadcrumb topping:
- 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese or dairy-free Parmesan cheese shreds
Adult: Preheat oven to 375° F.
Adult: Bring medium pot of water to boil.
Kid: Rinse, scrub, and dry sweet potatoes.
Adult: Peel and cube sweet potatoes.
Adult: Add sweet potatoes to boiling water and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until tender.
Kid: Mash sweet potatoes.
While potatoes are cooking
Adult: Cook macaroni according to package.
Adult: Cut onion in half.
Kid: Remove paper from outside of onion.
Adult: Dice onion.
Kid: Measure out 2 cups of spinach.
Adult: Chop spinach.
Kid: Peel garlic cloves.
Adult: Mince garlic.
Kid: Measure out olive oil in large pan and add onion and garlic.
Adult: Cook olive oil with onion and garlic for 4-5 minutes over medium heat.
Kid: Measure milk and vegetable broth.
Kid: Measure flour and add to onion mixture. Whisk for 30 seconds.
Together: Continue to whisk while slowly adding milk and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and continue to whisk. Reduce to low heat.
Kid: Measure out mustard, salt, pepper, red pepper chili flakes, and cheese.
Together: Add mustard, salt, pepper, red pepper chili flakes, cheese, and sweet potato to onion mixture. Stir well, and remove from heat.
Together: Add in noodles and mix well. Pour in oven safe casserole dish.
Kid: Top with parmesan cheese and panko crumbs.
Adult: Place in oven, uncovered, for 10-15 minutes, or until it gets bubbly.