Spinach-Bacon Mac and Cheese

Photo: Jennifer Davick, Beth Dreiling Hontzas; Styling: Melanie J. Clarke, Sissy Lamerton
Rotini with a homemade cheese sauce? Bacon? Your little ones won't notice they're eating spinach when they dig into this delicious side.

Yield:

Makes 4 servings

Recipe from

Recipe Time

Prep: 20 Minutes
Total: 20 Minutes

Ingredients

1/2 (16-oz.) package rotini pasta
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups 2% milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1 (10-oz.) block 2% sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 cup chopped cooked bacon (about 6 slices)
1 (6-oz.) package fresh baby spinach

Preparation

1. Prepare pasta according to package directions.

2. Meanwhile, melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Gradually whisk in flour until smooth; cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk and next 3 ingredients; cook, whisking constantly, 8 to 10 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat.

3. Gradually stir in Cheddar cheese, stirring until cheese is melted and sauce is smooth. Stir in bacon, spinach, and hot cooked pasta. Serve immediately.

Note:

December 2009