Is there anything better than mac & cheese? Easy answer. Nope.
Besides pizza, mac & cheese is my ultimate 1st choice. Not the Kraft boxed kind, I’m not one of those girls. I’m talking ooey gooey, baked, creamy & crunchy mac & cheese. I like to sample it in my travels (as if I am a traveller) and have a mental list of the best ones at all times (Bagger Dave’s actually has an incredible mac & cheese right now).
However, as you know by now, I am currently trying to eat cleaner and healthier, and mac & cheese just does not fit that prerequisite in the slightest. So when I came across this gem of a recipe at just 322 calories a serving, I knew it and my belly would be the best of friends.
The idea of carrots replacing cheese seems preposterous, I know. There is no replacement for cheese. We all know that. But believe me, this is creamy and cheesy and totally worth giving a try!
I adapted this recipe to be a little more flavorful than the original called for. I added, the onion, garlic, seasoning and sun-dried tomatoes. And yummy decision that was! Don’t you just love sun-dried tomatoes? They are tangy and delightful. Chop them up as little as possible so you can get some in each and every bite of mac & cheese.
- 6 ounces pasta (I used elbows)
- 2/3 lb. baby carrots
- 1 cup reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 tbsp. bread crumbs
- 4tsp. garlic
- 5 pieces sun dried tomatoes chopped up as tiny as possible
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 tsp garlic & herb seasoning (I used Mrs. Dash)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Place the baby carrots in a dish with 1/3 cup of water and cook on high for 5-7 minutes until the carrots are soft.
- Start the pasta and cook according to package instructions. Drain pasta when done and keep 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Put the pasts back into the pot.
- Put the carrots and any leftover carrot water from microwaving and pasta water into a blender and blend until smooth.
- Add the onions, seasoning and garlic and blend again.
- Add the carrot puree to the pasta and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. This will thicken the sauce.
- Turn the heat down to low and stir in the cheddar and sun dried tomatoes and stir until creamy.
- Pour into an 8×8 baking dish. Sprinkle bread crumbs over the top and back for 20-25 minutes.