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Hi.

Welcome to my blog. Front Range Fed is a blog about eating fresh, local food in and around Colorado's Front Range. Each week, I try new recipes, using as many local ingredients as possible. Join me as I discover the amazing things our local farms have to offer, and the delicious ways to enjoy them...one meal at a time. 

Homemade Pumpkin Mac And Cheese

Homemade Pumpkin Mac And Cheese

Pumpkin Mac And Cheese Recipe

Adding pumpkin puree to the sauce of this mac and cheese recipe makes it extra creamy and velvety, and adds tons of nutrition. This pumpkin mac and cheese is the ultimate in comfort food!

Are your kids mac and cheese addicts? Mine are. And, if I’m being honest, I am too. Who doesn’t love creamy cheesy pasta? This homemade pumpkin mac and cheese recipe takes the classic dish up a notch and adds tons of nutrition to it by including fiber rich pumpkin. Pumpkin is also a great source of vitamin A, potassium and antioxidants and is low in calories so it’s the perfect addition to a dish that is typically loaded with calories.  Plus, adding pumpkin puree to your cheese sauce makes it incredibly smooth and velvety. Delicious and healthy!

If you’ve never made homemade mac and cheese before, you’re missing out.  It’s super easy, and so much better than the store bought stuff. Plus, you can control the nutrition by including more healthy ingredients (like pumpkin!) and limiting some of the unhealthy stuff (like too much cheese or butter). 

Homemade mac and cheese is also easy to make – just boil your pasta noodles and make the sauce. Then combine the sauce and noodles and pop it in the oven for about 20-30 minutes.  Yes, it takes a little bit longer, but it’s so worth it. 

Homemade Pumpkin Mac And Cheese

You can really customize the flavors of this sauce – we used garlic and sage to make it a bit savory. You could also add a little red pepper or hot sauce to make a spicy mac n cheese. And, you could up the nutrition factor even more by adding chopped walnuts or other veggies.   

Try this ultimate comfort food for dinner!

Homemade Pumpkin Mac And Cheese

Ingredients 

  • 1 pound pasta shells or macaroni

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour

  • 2 cups whole milk

  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon sage

  • 1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree

  • 6 ounces extra sharp cheddar (plus extra for sprinkling on top)

  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

  • Panko breadcrumbs

 

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. 

  2. Cook pasta as directed on package. Drain when finished cooking.

  3. While your pasta is cooking, make your sauce.  Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat (don’t let it burn!).  Once the butter is melted and slightly bubbly, add your flour and stir constantly for 2-3 minutes to combine.

  4. Continue to stir the flour/butter mixture as you add your milk. Your rue will begin to thicken slightly. 

  5. Season the sauce with salt, pepper, garlic powder and sage. 

  6. Add the pumpkin and cheddar cheese to the sauce. Stir constantly until combined and the cheese has melted. Add more salt and pepper to taste.

  7. Add the sauce to your cooked pasta noodles and combine well.

  8. Transfer to a buttered casserole dish and top with remaining cheddar cheese, Parmesan, and breadcrumbs.

  9. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes.

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