Oven baked mac ‘n’ cheese gets an extra pop of flavor with the addition of pumpkin!
Of course I had to start the week off with something sweet, but pumpkin is also great in savory recipes. And what better comfort food, than mac ‘n’ cheese?!? Thanks to Cabot Creamery, I used an amazing Vermont extra sharp white cheddar that pairs perfectly with the creamy pumpkin for the sauce.
I’m usually somewhat of a mac ‘n’ cheese purist, in the way that I like the stove-top varieties. However, I couldn’t resist trying an oven baked version this time. And let me just tell you – it did not disappoint. It’s still creamy and delicious, but it has an added crunch on top from the breadcrumbs. And the pumpkin flavor is subtle, not overpowering. It was just flat-out amazing, if you ask me!
Nat loves her some pasta (she’s my carb girl, for sure) and she devoured this pumpkin mac ‘n’ cheese. That, alone, would make me consider this a winning dish, because…toddler. But, it really is the perfect comfort food, fall weather dish! I mean, what is better on a cool night than pulling a piping hot casserole dish out of the oven and having THIS to look forward to???
Not much, my friends. Not much at all.
So, make sure that when you get into all things pumpkin in the coming weeks and months, that you add this dish to your list. Trust me…you don’t want to miss out.
Now, the recipe you can no longer live without.
Pumpkin Mac ‘n’ Cheese
- 1 12-oz can evaporated milk
- 1/2 15-oz can pumpkin puree
- 2 Eggland’s Best large eggs
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/8 tsp cayenne
- 8 oz macaroni or other small, dry pasta noodles
- 8 oz Cabot Vermont Extra Sharp White Cheddar, shredded
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese plus extra for garnish
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a 9×9 inch (or similar size) baking pan with cooking spray.
- Cook pasta in a large pot of salted water, until al dente, drain and return to the pot.
- While the pasta is cooking, combine the evaporated milk, pumpkin puree, eggs, smoked paprika, salt, pepper and cayenne and mix until combined. Pour the mixture into the pot with the pasta and stir until combined. Continue cooking over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, for about 3-4 minutes, or until the sauce comes to a simmer and thickens slightly.
- Remove pan from heat and stir in about 6 ounces of the shredded cheddar and the Parmesan until melted and evenly-distributed.
- Pour the pasta into the prepared baking pan. Then top with the remaining cheese and breadcrumbs.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbling and the breadcrumbs are toasted. Remove and serve immediately.
Source: Gimme Some Oven