If you were to ask my 3 kids what they wanted for dinner each night, they would all reply “macaroni and cheese”! Seriously, my kids are obsessed with it! They rarely eat it anymore since I tend to cook a wide variety of things these days, however, last night when they told me that they wanted it for dinner, I happily whipped this up for them. All three of my kids ate it and never once even mentioned all the veggies being in it. I was shocked! My kids are your typical young children, where they can be picky and not want to eat their veggies. They never stopped shoveling it in and I was quite pleased! My two year old even asked for more and was picking out the red peppers to eat them separately, hehe!!
1 1/2 cups broccoli florets, chopped small
1 red pepper, diced
1 medium yellow squash, quartered and chopped
8-10 baby carrots, chopped
1 tbsp garlic powder
3 cups macaroni pasta
1/4 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tbsp all purpose flour
2 cups milk
2 cups Cheddar Cheese
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (add more or less depending on level of spiciness desired)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Pepper
Italian Bread Crumbs
Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and lightly spray some cooking spray on it. Place all the veggies (broccoli, red pepper, squash, and carrots) on the tray. Pour some olive oil on top and toss to coat veggies thoroughly. Sprinkle some garlic powder on top and bake in a preheated oven (400) for about 20 minutes, or until veggies are tender. Remove from oven, set aside.
In a pot, boil water and cook/drain pasta according to directions. Meanwhile, while pasta is cooking, heat olive oil on medium-high in a large skillet. Add in minced garlic and allow to cook about 30 seconds. Whisk in flour and cook for about a minute. Next, pour in the milk and whisk until mixture thickens up. Remove from heat and add in cheese. Stir until cheese is melted. Add in red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper.
Pour cheese mixture onto drained pasta and mix until combined. Add in veggies. Once combined, pour mixture into a casserole dish (I used a 9×13) and sprinkle Italian Bread Crumbs on top. Place in oven and broil for about 3-5 minutes.