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Two-Pepper Rigatoni and Cheese

Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross
Total time 40 mins
Yield 8 servings (serving size: 1 cup)

Ingredients

  • 5 cups uncooked rigatoni (16 ounces uncooked pasta)
  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups fat-free milk
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded fontina cheese
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped pickled jalapeño pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onions
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 (1-ounce) slices white bread

Nutrition Information

  • calories 408
  • fat 12.8 g
  • satfat 7.8 g
  • monofat 3.3 g
  • polyfat 0.6 g
  • protein 19.2 g
  • carbohydrate 54.5 g
  • fiber 2.4 g
  • cholesterol 40 mg
  • iron 2.5 mg
  • sodium 550 mg
  • calcium 293 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 375°.

  2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain well; place in a large bowl.

  3. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add bell pepper; sauté 5 minutes or until tender. Add to pasta.

  4. Add flour to pan. Gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Bring to a boil; cook 2 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add cheeses, stirring until cheeses melt and mixture is smooth. Stir in jalapeño and salt. Add cheese mixture to pasta, tossing well to coat. Stir in green onions. Spoon pasta mixture into a 13 x 9–inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

  5. Place bread slices in a food processor; pulse 10 times or until coarse crumbs measure about 1 cup. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Combine butter and breadcrumbs in a small bowl; toss until blended. Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture over pasta mixture. Bake at 375° for 15 minutes or until browned.