It’s that time again, a pumpkin recipe! I’m pretty sure you will see a almost weekly pumpkin recipe until Halloween.. I just can’t get enough!
I know some of you don’t want summer to end, but I’d like for you to take my hand and enter into Fall’s journey. It’s full of beautiful leaves, apple cider, chilly nights, comfortable socks, ghosts and goblins, the color orange.
Although during the day it doesn’t feel like Fall, this evening I had to wear a sweatshirt while watering the garden. That was a first! And although it’s supposed to be 90 degrees on Wednesday, I’m going to pretend that it’s practically Fall and eat my pumpkin until all the Halloween decorations are out in the stores! Note: Target has some Halloween decorations out in the dollar aisles and my local pharmacy Duane Reade was stocking some plastic smiling pumpkins today. I nearly squealed. Actually I did squeal. I love Halloween. LOVE LOVE LOVE Halloween. Wait to you see my stuffed pumpkin and ghost collection! I’m thinking about starting to decorate this week – too soon? Never!
Where was I?
Oh pumpkin! Oh this recipe!
First it was Fudgy Pumpkin Brownies, then it was Pumpkin Chili… now I’m pulling out the big guns.. Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese!
Not only does this recipe have pumpkin which is delicious, but it’s pumpkin macaroni and cheese. I know, drop what you’re doing – this is getting serious. Pumpkin, Melted Cheese, Pasta – can it get any more perfect? I’m not sure, but I’d like to think this is close to it. The pumpkin doesn’t overwhelm this macaroni and cheese, it adds a creaminess and richness…and it adds great nutrients. If your family loves their macaroni and cheese, this is a great alternative full of fiber and vitamins.
Bonus points: If you grow pumpkins make sure you make pumpkin puree – it will make this dish incredibly fresh, Earthy (in a good way), and you will just feel like a pumpkin boss.
- 2 cups elbow macaroni
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Dash of nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Heat oven to 350 degrees.
- Make elbow macaroni according to box. Drain, set aside.
- In a medium size saucepan melt your butter over low-medium heat. Stir in flour and continue to stir until smooth. Stir in milk and bring to a simmer. Continue to stir for 1 minute until it's thickened. Remove from heat.
- Stir in pepper, nutmeg, mustard.
- Add in pumpkin puree and 2 cups of shredded cheese, stirring until cheese is completely melted.
- Add macaroni to cheese mixture and stir until it's all coated. Pour into baking dish.
- Top with 1/4 cup remaining shredded cheese.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes.
These are some of our pumpkins we picked this summer, along with some fresh pumpkin puree I just made. We have another batch of pumpkins to pick in October, I love Fall!
Preserving fact: Pumpkin freezes amazing. I usually freeze pumpkin in 8 oz or 16 oz portions. Pumpkin Puree easily lasts up to a year in the freezer. Pumpkins you guys, they just are the best. And they are really really cute!
Gather your ingredients. The saucepan to the right has your melted butter, flour and milk.
And then add your pumpkin puree and 2 cups of cheese. Stir cheese until it’s fully melted.
Then add your elbow macaroni and stir… I dare you not to just take a big spoonful right now. Me? I took about 6.
Put in a baking dish. Something I’d like to talk about right now, don’t panic as it’s extremely runny. Once it bakes it won’t be runny at all. Again, it will be ok! You have to trust me on this one…
1/4 cup of your remaining cheese goes on top…
And after 25 minutes – BOOM! MY GOODNESS. LOOK AT THIS MAGIC. I think I almost cried. I think I did, I am a very emotional person.