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Ham and Cheese Ranch Pasta Recipe

Ham and Cheese Ranch Pasta Recipe

To cut the fat in this makeover recipe, we reduced the amount of butter from 1/4 cup to 1 tablespoon, switched the cheese to a reduced-fate Mexican cheese blend and chose lean ham over regular. These changes cut the calories by nearly a third and reduced the fat, saturated fat cholesterol and sodium by more than half.—Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Greendale, Wisconsin
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 25 min. YIELD:10 servings


  • 1 package (16 ounces) penne pasta
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup fat-free milk
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon salt-free lemon-pepper seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried minced onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon dill weed
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) reduced-fat sour cream
  • 2 cups cubed fully cooked ham
  • 1-1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded reduced-fat Mexican cheese blend
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese


  • 1. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. In a Dutch oven, melt butter; whisk in flour until smooth. Gradually add milk and seasonings. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.
  • 2. Reduce heat; fold in sour cream until blended. Add ham and pasta; cook and stir until heated through. Remove from the heat; stir in Mexican cheese blend until melted. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Yield: 10 servings.

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 306 calories, 9g fat (5g saturated fat), 27mg cholesterol, 612mg sodium, 38g carbohydrate (0g sugars, 2g fiber), 20g protein Diabetic Exchanges: 2 starch, 2 lean meat.

Reviews for Ham and Cheese Ranch Pasta

Sort By :
jmkasprak 224960
Reviewed Apr. 16, 2015

"It was just okay for my taste."

kdwarren 214526
Reviewed Dec. 10, 2014

"I normally make this when I have leftover ham. It is quick, easy, and has good flavour. Great weeknight meal when time is rushed. I never use the parmesan cheese and I only use about one cup of the shredded cheese and I don't feel this detracts from the taste at all."

Brenda MH 129109
Reviewed Sep. 7, 2014

"Great flavor combination, only thing I changed was that I used Monterey Jack cheese instead of the Mexican blend."

jtermont 205629
Reviewed Apr. 18, 2014

"I absolutely love this dish. I have made it several times and love the flavors. I have made it with chicken to cut back a little on salt. Highly recommend."

gillettcookie 128192
Reviewed Jul. 10, 2013

"we made this tonight. My 13 yr old picked out the recipe fm the Comfort Food Diet cookbook. I let her cook it since it was simple enough... and we had all the ingredients. She was proud of herself and we all enjoyed it. Quick and easy too!! Very good... thanks!!"

angela mcguire 64556
Reviewed Apr. 6, 2013

"This dish is a hit every time I make it! I think people love it because of the dill in it. It's perfect to feed a lot of people."

MY REVIEW 140463
Reviewed Jun. 30, 2012

"I was pleasantly surprised by this recipe. It was GOOD! I was expecting another boring mac and cheese recipe, but this is far from it. Perfect !"

tobinhouse 70453
Reviewed Dec. 30, 2011

"Very good recipe. It makes a lot so plan on several people or you can freeze for future use."

teri396 48886
Reviewed Aug. 27, 2011

"flavor was good texture was off, but i used half penne and half macroni. it was what i had."

tapenn 89635
Reviewed Jan. 25, 2011

"Everyone in the family really enjoyed this dish. The flavor was very good. We will make this again!"

caparmenter 59038
Reviewed Jan. 12, 2011

"I gave it 4 out of 5 because 4 out of the 5 people eating it liked it. One child said he didn't like and another said "Are you crazy these noodles are awesome." It is a quick, easy meal with convenient ingredients."

camberc 58994
Reviewed Dec. 7, 2010

"This is definitely a keeper! Great flavor and you'd never guess it's lighter. We will definitely be eating this again!"

tlkoller 130761
Reviewed Jun. 6, 2010

"Love this recipe! It's become a family favorite!"

christiweker 135408
Reviewed Apr. 12, 2010

"I love this!! I add broccoli to it as well, so it's a complete meal! One of my favs!"

mrsvalgal 89634
Reviewed Feb. 5, 2010

"I REALLY liked it! The kids found the noodles to be cumbersome though, so next time I might try a smaller noodle. It really was a quick and easy recipe.

It reminded me of the boxed Ranch and pasta packets you can buy - but so much better!"

becky8637 64554
Reviewed Nov. 7, 2009

"This was quick and easy. I put it in a casserole dish and topped it with some panko bread crumbs and then baked it for a bit to brown the crumbs. It was really good. Definitely has a "ranch" flavor."

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Wine Pairings

Medium-Bodied Red Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a medium-bodied red wine such as Chianti, Sangiovese, Malbec or Zinfandel.