“I decided to give my old mac 'n' cheese recipe a new twist by including some of my favorite Southwestern ingredients. I especially like the smoky flavors of the chipotle and bacon…my family loves it all!” Serve with a salad or veggie. Naomi Reed - McMinnville, Oregon
- 3-1/3 cups uncooked bow tie pasta
- 1 medium sweet red pepper, chopped
- 8 green onions, chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon minced chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2-1/4 cups fat-free milk
- 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
- 4 center-cut bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
- Cook pasta according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute pepper and onions in oil until tender. Stir in the flour, chili powder, chipotle pepper, salt and cumin until blended. Gradually stir in milk. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in 1/4 cup cheese until melted.
- Drain pasta; toss with sauce. Stir in bacon and cilantro. Transfer to a 2-qt. baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered, at 400° for 20-25 minutes or until bubbly. Yield: 8 servings.
Originally published as Southwestern Pasta & Cheese in Healthy Cooking February/March 2009, p36
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