Healthy Mac and Cheese for Summer

healthy mac and cheese

I’ve yet to meet a kid who doesn’t like mac and cheese. Even picky eaters seem to gobble it down, which means it’s the perfect opportunity to get more veggies into your kids.

I make different versions of mac and cheese depending on the season: butternut squash mac and cheese in the fall, mac and cheese with frozen peas or frozen spinach in the winter, and this summer squash mac and cheese in the summer. Yellow squash is a particularly great veggie in mac and cheese because when shredded, it kind of melts right into the cheese sauce and offers just a little more texture and flavor.

Enjoy!

healthy mac and cheese

Summer Squash Mac and Cheese

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cups dry macaroni noodles, shells, or any other small pasta
  • 3 medium yellow squash (the ones that look like yellow zucchini), shredded
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups shredded medium cheddar cheese
  • Salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a generous pinch of salt and cook noodles according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Add butter, shredded squash and a pinch of salt to the pan and saute over medium heat for 4-5 minutes or until squash has softened. Add the flour and saute another minute.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low, pour in milk and stir regularly until milk is steaming and has thickened a little. Remove the pot from heat, add a small pinch of salt and stir in the cheese.
  4. Continue stirring until cheese has melted, then add the noodles back to the pot and stir gently until ingredients are well-incorporated.
  5. Serve hot.
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healthy mac and cheese

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Comments

  1. grace brockway says:

    You obviously don’t have a picky eater to deal with. i made homemade mac & cheese for my granddaughters and they turned up their noses at it because it wasn’t what they are used to. Not only don’t they like my homemade dish, one won’t eat Trader Joe’s brand, one doesn’t like Kraft and both would rebel if there were anything except macaroni and cheese in the dish (even though one of them loves vegetables!).

    • Hi Grace. Clearly there are different levels of pickiness. Sounds like your grandkids pose a big challenge so perhaps small changes over time & including them in kitchen/shopping/cooking projects may help, if not right away then eventually. It’s probably also easier to make changes/rules when you’re the parent, since home is where kids generally develop their routine eating habits.

  2. Ooh, looks good! I have a confession–I’ve never ate squash. Of any variety. Might have to start experimenting though!

    Enjoy,
    TBQ

  3. Hi Amelia,
    I made this recipe last evening, using sweet potato instead of yellow squash. I added a few frozen peas, and it was delicious! Thanks for the inspiration.

  4. This looks delicious! My son refuses to eat Mac & Cheese, but I’ll try this one. Who knows, maybe it will be “the one”!

Trackbacks

  1. […] Summer Squash Macaroni and Cheese Ingredients: 2 cups dry macaroni noodles, shells, or any other small pasta (I bought quinoa noodles at the IV Co-op and they were delicious 3 medium yellow squash, shredded 2 Tbsp butter 1 Tbsp flour 2 cups whole milk 2 cups shredded medium cheddar cheese Salt to taste Directions: 1.Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a generous pinch of salt and cook noodles according to package directions. Drain and set aside. 2.Add butter, shredded squash and a pinch of salt to the pan and sauté over medium heat for 4-5 minutes or until squash has softened. Add the flour and sauté another minute. 3.Reduce heat to medium-low, pour in milk and stir regularly until milk is steaming and has thickened a little. Remove the pot from heat, add a small pinch of salt and stir in the cheese. 4.Continue stirring until cheese has melted, then add the noodles back to the pot and stir gently until ingredients are well-incorporated. 5.Serve hot. (Recipe from Eating Made Easy) […]