1.26.2012

Mac 'n Cheese with Bacon

Mac 'n cheese is a staple of the South, and a dish I would eat every day...if calories were a thing of the past.  There are many different twists on this classic dish, but when I saw the 'Hungry Girl' version I couldn't wait to try it.  The Hungry Girl website is full of wonderful recipes that represent the low fat side of everyday favorites and indulgent treats.  She also now, has a show on the Food Network, which is where I saw the BLT-riffic Mac n'Cheese.  TV and I made this for dinner last night LOVED it - I hope you will enjoy it too!

Ingredients
  • 3 slices turkey bacon or center-cut bacon
  • 4 1/2 ounces (about 1 1/2 cups) dry uncooked whole-wheat or high-fiber penne pasta
  • 2 large yellow summer squash
  • 3 cups chopped fresh spinach
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 4 wedges light spreadable Swiss cheese (recommended: The Laughing Cow Light)
  • 2 tablespoons fat-free sour cream
  • 2 slices fat-free Cheddar cheese
  • Salt, black pepper, and garlic salt - optional

Directions

1.  Place bacon in nonstick skillet - cook on medium heat on each side for 4-6 minutes or until crispy. When bacon has cooled, crumbly or cut.  



2. Prepare boiling water in a pot and cook pasts until the al dente state.  When complete, drain,  return to pot, and cover to retain heat. 

3. During step 2, wash the 2 squash and cut into small, thin pieces.  And seed and chop the tomato.


4. Add squash to a skillet, sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, and cook covered over medium for 5-6 minutes.  (I stirred once during this time)


5. Add spinach and tomato to the skillet, re-cover, and continue to cook for about 1 minute. Remove cover and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until spinach has wilted, tomatoes are soft, and excess liquid has cooked off, about 3 minutes. If needed, drain any excess liquid - then sit aside. 


6. Place cheese wedges in a microwave-safe bowl and stir to break them up. Add sour cream and cheese slices, breaking cheese slices into pieces as you add them. Microwave for 30 seconds, and then stir thoroughly. Microwave for another 30 seconds, or until cheeses have fully melted. Mix until smooth.
7. Add cheese mixture and cooked veggies to the pasta. Toss to coat. Top with bacon.  If you like, season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve it up!

This recipe will serve 4 people -- 1 Cup has 227 calories, 5g fat, and 13g protein.  Eat this yummy Mac n' Cheese with no regrets!!

Love, ABV

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