Tuesday, November 2

Pumpkin Mac & Cheese

We've all  done the sweet baked goodies with pumpkin, but what about the savory side of things? I was in the mood for some good comfort food and I wanted to use some of the pumpkin that I pureed on Sunday. I couldn't make meatloaf since the meat was frozen...so what to do? Why not try some creamy, delicious, cheesy Mac n' Cheese...with pumpkin! Genius! I also had some leftover mashed sweet potato from a dinner towards the end of last week, so why not use that too. What a great, healthy way to get that great orange-y color!

3 Cheese Pumpkin Mac n' Cheese

1 box pasta wheels (or pasta of your choice)
1 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 c. cut-up velveeta 
1 c. pureed pumpkin
1/2c. mashed sweet potatoes (or pureed)
2 c. milk, divided
1/2 tsp nutmeg 
1/4 tsp basil
pinch of pepper
1/4-1/2 tsp salt
1/4 c. chopped onions
1 tsp minced garlic
olive oil to saute onions & garlic

    Cook pasta according to package directions. 
    Heat the olive oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Once the olive oil is heated, add in the chopped onions and minced garlic. Stir occasionally. 
    Meanwhile, in a large saucepan over low medium heat (about a 4 on a scale of 10), add in cheeses and one cup of milk. Whisk until cheeses start melting together. Add in pumpkin and sweet potato. Whisk again and add in the remaining one cup of milk. Once everything is incorporated, add in nutmeg and basil; add the pepper and salt to taste. Cover and turn down the heat to low (as low as it goes without being turned off). Stir occasionally.
    Once the onions are caramelized (nice dark golden brown), stir them into the cheese sauce and replace lid.
    After draining the pasta, once the onions are added to the sauce, return the pasta to its pot. Pour the cheese sauce over the pasta and stir to cover the pasta well. 
    Enjoy heaping portions! 

    My husband has been a good sport about my let's-put-pumpkin-in-everything kick I've been on this year, but I think his patience is running thin. He wasn't too excited about this meal, so I hadn't planned on posting it. Then my Mommy had some (who shares my enthusiasm for fresh pumpkin) and really enjoyed it! So if my Mom liked it, and my girls ate it up, and I liked it so much I plan on making it again, then why not share it! I hope you guys enjoy it as much as we did! 
    By the way, for those with little ones like myself, hot dogs might not be a bad addition. ;) I also think that diced ham would be good too-- the possibilities are endless!

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