This hearty mac and cheese recipe completely fulfills that purpose. With an entire can of organic pureed pumpkin dumped in, I'm happy because he's getting a serving of orange vegetables and milk and my 14 month old is happy because he's getting some tasty noodles with cheese. Win/win for us both. (And I have to be honest, you can barely even taste the pumpkin so it's a great recipe for older children with more suspicious palettes as well.)
Here's what you do:
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
12 oz GF elbow macaroni or another kind of pasta (I used a box and a half of Ancient Harvest Rotelle)
2 Tbsp of GF flour blend
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 tsp ground mustard
Salt and black pepper to taste
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup GF bread crumbs
1/4 grated Parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 375. Grease a large baking dish with butter or Pam. (I used a 9X13 inch glass dish)
2. Cook pasta according to package instructions, drain and return to pot.
3. While pasta cooks, melt 2 Tbsp of butter in large sauce pan over medium heat.
4. Add flour and whisk until combined.
5. Add in milk, mustard, salt and pepper. Continue whisking until mixture is thickened and bubbling.
6. Add pumpkin and cheese.
7. Stir until creamy, (about a minute) and remove from heat.
8. Pour sauce evenly over cooked pasta.
9. Transfer coated pasts to the prepared baking dish.
10. In small bowl mix bread crumbs with Parmesan cheese and oil. Spread evenly over pasta.
11. Bake for 15-20 minutes until topping is golden brown.