Saturday, January 24

Creamy One Pot Macaroni and Cheese with Spinach


I have made a couple small changes to my diet to feel better and be healthier. One being I have reduced how much dairy I am eating. I have really noticed how bloated and heavy I feel after eating something cheesy or drinking a glass of milk.  I swear since reducing my dairy intake my gut is half the size. 
The little kangaroo pouch I always joke about since having 3 kids? Gone. So I really think I am on to something.... me + dairy = not so good. 
A few weeks into my little bloated belly challenge, I got a mad craving for pizza.... and then Cabot sent me one of their spectacular goodie boxes filled with SO MUCH CHEESE.  What was I supposed to do? Suffer I guess, because obviously I had to make some mac n' cheese the day after I binged on pizza. 
This recipe is great because it is made in one pot, no dirtying a second sauce pan for the cheese, and no need for a colander to strain the pasta. Everything gets tossed in one pot. PLUS if you like to do a baked variation, if you use a dutch oven or other cook top/oven safe pot you can toss it in to bake too!  Fewer dishes makes this busy mom super happy. 
Creamy One Pot Macaroni and Cheese with Spinach

Ingredients:
  • 4 cups uncooked pasta (I use jumbo casserole elbows)
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock (one carton) 
  • 1 tbs yellow mustard
  • 8 oz Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
  • 4 oz cream cheese, room temperature 
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 large handfuls of baby spinach
  • 1/4-1 cup milk (optional) 
  • Cherry tomatoes for garnish (optional)
Directions:
  1. In a large dutch oven add uncooked pasta, chicken stock, and salt together. Bring to a boil
  2. Reduce heat to low and allow to simmer, string occasionally to keep pasta from sticking together. 
  3. Simmer, while stirring occasionally for about 15-20 minutes or until the stock has almost been absorbed completely and the pasta is tender. 
  4. Remove from heat. 
  5. Mix yellow mustard, cheddar, cream cheese, sour cream until it is all incorporated.
  6. Once the cheese is melted, and everything is smooth, add in additional milk 1/4 cup at a time IF NEEDED. 
  7. Mix in spinach and allow to sit for about 5 minutes before serving. I like my spinach wilted, but not completely limp and slimy. 
  8. Serve with fresh chopped cherry tomatoes. Or add a cracker topping and place in the oven at 400 for about 15 minutes or until it is bubbly and browning. 

(Disclaimer: Cabot sent me free cheese to enjoy with my family. I was not compensated for this post and all opinions are 100% my own. P.S. I LOVE CABOT!)
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18 comments:

  1. I'm all over a yummy dish that only uses one pot. What I love about this one is how pretty and colorful it looks. Plus...mac & cheese! PS WE LOVE YOU TOO!

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  2. I love that this is gluten free mac&cheese, if I use GF macaroni! No need to alter the sauce recipe :) Can't wait to make it, thanks!!

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    1. You will have to let me know how that adaption turns out!!!

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  3. This looks AMAZING!! I love the idea of a one pot mac and cheese, sooooo good! Plus spinach in AWESOME in mac and cheese!

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  4. MMMmmmm! What? Only one pot and I can have all this creamy goodness? Awesome!

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  5. Now that is some seriously creamy mac n cheese. LOVE it! Also, I know what you mean about dairy. I have a problem with lactose so I can eat cheese without having issues but milk, ice cream, stuff like that gives me some serious issues!

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    1. I binged on Mac n' cheese over the weekend and some other creamy things at a bday party... Oh man do I regret it! I was so bloated last night i looked pregnant.

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  6. This looks incredible! I love the addition of the spinach. I substantially cut back on my dairy consumption a couple years ago and my oldest daughter doesn't eat it because of that bloated, awful feeling. I husband and youngest on the other hand with by cheese! Cabot is the brand we love most so I will definitely be giving this recipe a try!

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    1. Thanks Jess! God, I binged on mac n' cheese this weekend because we had a bday party for my son... and that's what I made. I felt so awful all night. I need to learn my lesson!

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  7. This looks so great! I really wish I could pinpoint what bloats/pains me - I literally look pregnant by 9pm. I try cutting back on things, but then I bake something and it's just tooooo good. Mind you, I've tried carbs, sugar, milk, caffeine to no avail - I didn't try dairy as a whole, so maybe I'll have to!

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  8. I've made this twice now and it is fantastic. So easy to make too. I have also forwarded this to many people. Thanks so much for the recipe. It rivals most any gourmet mac and cheese. Also relatively budget friendly as it does not use expensive cheeses like gruyere.

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  9. I've made this twice now and it is fantastic. So easy to make too. I have also forwarded this to many people. Thanks so much for the recipe. It rivals most any gourmet mac and cheese. Also relatively budget friendly as it does not use expensive cheeses like gruyere.

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  10. Do you think it would come out the same if I use neufchatel and reduced fat sour cream?

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    1. It will not come out the same... but I'm sure it will be tasty!

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