Beef, Cheese, and Noodle Bake

Photo: Lee Harrelson

Trick the picky "noodles only" eaters at the table with this macaroni and cheese casserole. It's packed with lean sirloin, shredded veggies, and lots of calcium–each serving has 200 milligrams. Serve with a green veggie or side salad.

Yield:

8 servings (serving size: about 1 cup)

Recipe from

Nutritional Information

Calories 283
Caloriesfromfat 24 %
Fat 7.7 g
Satfat 4.2 g
Monofat 2.4 g
Polyfat 0.7 g
Protein 22.3 g
Carbohydrate 30.1 g
Fiber 2.1 g
Cholesterol 46 mg
Iron 3.1 mg
Sodium 622 mg
Calcium 209 mg

Ingredients

1 (8-ounce) package small elbow macaroni
Cooking spray
1 cup prechopped onion
1 cup preshredded carrot
2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
1 pound lean ground sirloin
1 cup tomato sauce
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup fat-free milk
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) 2% reduced-fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese (such as Cracker Barrel), divided

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°.

Cook pasta according to the package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Lightly coat pasta with cooking spray.

Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion and carrot, and sauté 4 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add ground beef; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Add tomato sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Cook for 2 minutes or until most of liquid evaporates.

Add pasta to beef mixture in pan, stirring to combine. Spoon pasta mixture into an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Place milk, flour, nutmeg, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium saucepan; stir with a whisk until blended. Cook over medium heat 2 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add 1 cup cheese, stirring until smooth. Pour cheese mixture over pasta mixture; stir. Top evenly with remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Note:

For creamiest results, do not overbake.

MyRecipes is working with Let's Move!, the Partnership for a Healthier America, and USDA's MyPlate to give anyone looking for healthier options access to a trove of recipes that will help them create healthy, tasty plates. For more information about creating a healthy plate, visit www.choosemyplate.gov.

Joy Zacharia

,

January 2006
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