This is a very good recipe! I made it for lunch today, and it was a hit! I'm sure it would be good for a potluck as well. I did make some slight alterations however. I used Rotini noodles instead or elbows, only one heaping teaspoon of garlic, and mixed cheeses. A word of caution though, you may want to leave out the nutmeg. I found the flavor a touch overpowering. If you decide not to skip it, you may wish to use a stronger cheese, (such as Colby Jack, or sharp cheddar) The carrots were not our favorite either.
Beef, Cheese, and Noodle Bake
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.
More From Cooking Light
- Calories: 283
- Calories from fat: 24%
- Fat: 7.7g
- Saturated fat: 4.2g
- Monounsaturated fat: 2.4g
- Polyunsaturated fat: 0.7g
- Protein: 22.3g
- Carbohydrate: 30.1g
- Fiber: 2.1g
- Cholesterol: 46mg
- Iron: 3.1mg
- Sodium: 622mg
- Calcium: 209mg
- 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
- 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.
For creamiest results, do not overbake.
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