Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Healthier Mac And Cheese Balls

The first time I tried mac and cheese balls was at the Sugar Factory in Las Vegas. They were so unbelievably good, I still have dreams about that special meal. I wanted to try to recreate them at home but I don't have a fancy deep fryer appliance. What I do have is a healthier recipe that doesn't require a deep fryer and it's easier on the heart without sacrificing the taste. I saw this recipe, again on Pinterest, and I waited only one day to test it out. The only issue I had was a difficult time scooping them out without ruining the shape. My suggestion: wait 5-10 minutes to cool and then scoop them out of the muffin pan, the shape will stay. I didn't have all the vegetables available so I substituted the carrots, winter squash, and peas with frozen corn. I need to go grocery shopping!

Source's Photo

1 Cup or 1 box of whole wheat elbow macaroni
1 1/2 Tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Medium onion (if non available, a few of onion powder) 
2 Finely chopped carrots,
1 Package (16 oz) frozen peas 
1 Box (12 oz) frozen cooked winter squash
1 1/4 Cup  2% milk 
1 3/4 Cup shredded cheddar and monterey jack blend 
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard (or any flavor of mustard)
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce 
1/4 Cup fresh whole wheat bread crumbs 
2 Tbsp finely grated Parmesan

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375°F and lightly coat 12 muffin cups (1/2-cup capacity) or 2 1/2 to 3 qt baking dish with olive oil spray. 
  2. Prepare macaroni al dente according to package directions. 
  3. Heat olive oil in large pot over medium heat while macaroni cooks. Add onion and carrots and cook until softened (about 5 minutes). 
  4. Stir in peas, squash, and milk and bring just to a simmer. 
  5. Add shredded cheese, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce and stir until cheese is melted.
  6. Remove cheese mixture from heat. 
  7. Drain macaroni and immediately add to cheese mixture. Toss until well combined.
  8. Mound in prepared muffin cups and toss bread crumbs then parmesan cheese evenly over top of macaroni. 
  9. Bake pan in middle of oven until tops are golden brown and cheese sauce is bubbling for about 20-22 minutes. 
  10. Let stand 10 minutes before serving (this will help maintain shape)

Looks gross I know but it'll taste amazing!
Ready for the oven
All done and ready to go!

What I learned about the healthier mac and cheese balls is that it's basically baked mac and cheese but in little adorable ball shape, still worth trying!!!


Cheryl Hurley said...

These look great; I love the addition of peas. Can you imagine lobster mac and cheese balls for a party?! Or chorizo (though that's not exactly healthy)? I die! Thanks for letting me know about the post!


Sam said...

Ive never even heard of this before, it sounds super yum, mac and cheese isn't a big thing here in Safrica but I would love to try this version out. Thanks for the recipe hun!

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