deceptively healthy mac & cheese

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Cold weather brings cravings for warm, cozy foods, such as mac and cheese.  Unfortunately, my Grandma’s mac and cheese has about 10 lbs of cheese and cream.

In this recipe, I tried to add nutritious ingredients, such as mushrooms and swiss chard,  reduce the cream by replacing it with greek yogurt, while also keeping some of the delicious cheesiness, and adding some great crunch with the bread crumbs.  So I created the following recipe this evening. It was a huge success.

Ingredients:

1/2 box of noodles (I used rigatoni, but you can use any noodles you have on hand or prefer)

1/2 large onion, diced

1 tbsp butter

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 package shitake mushrooms (or any other mushrooms that you enjoy)

1 fresh bunch swiss chard

1 cup greek yogurt

1 tbsp spicy mustard

1/4 cup sharp cheddar

1/4 cup feta cheese

1/4 cup green onions, sliced (optional)

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 tsp olive oil

bread crumbs

fresh  basil, roughly chopped for garnish

Directions: 

1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Boil your water and add the desired amount of pasta.

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2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saute pan and add the onions and garlic. Saute for about 2 minutes.

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3. Add the mushrooms and saute for another 2-3 minutes.

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4. While sauteing the mushroom mixture, wash and de-stem the swiss chard.

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5. Coarsely chop or tear the swiss chard.

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6. 2 minutes before the noodles are suppose to be finished cooking, add the swiss chard into the pot.  Drain the noddle mixture.

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7. Mix together the greek yogurt, mustard, green onions, salt, and pepper.

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8. Add everything into a greased baking dish.

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9. Mix in the cheese (decided to use half cheddar and half feta cheese- but use whatever type of cheese y0u like or that is in the fridge).

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10. Add the greek yogurt mixture on top and mix into the noodle mixture.

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11. Top with breadcrumbs. Cover and bake for 15 minutes.

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12. Then uncover the dish and bake for another 10-15 minutes.

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12. Serve with the apple and blackberry salad for a delicious, wholesome, healthy meal!

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cheers and happy evolving!

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