Extra Cheesy Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese with Jalapenos! This cheesy recipe is pure comfort food, perfect to enjoy in the Fall season!
This recipe includes the ingredients:
Which means it’s perfect.
It’s the perfect savory holiday macaroni and cheese, ready to be served to your family and friends. I don’t just reserve pumpkin for Fall though so I say have it year round!
Let’s talk Halloween first. Are you ready for it? I said 2 weeks ago I was going to get the Halloween decorations out but I still haven’t as it’s been hectic here with work. I wrote HALLOWEEN on 12 post-its posted all over our home though so I’m hoping this weekend it gets done! One of the things I miss most being from a small town is trick or treaters and people decorating their houses to to the extreme. Every year my Mom would go crazy with decorations from the windows to the door to the kitchen table. I love giving out treats to trick or treaters and making them tell me about their costumes, but my neighborhood in Brooklyn doesn’t really have trick or treaters, plus I live in a loft building so it’s not like the kids are going to go apartment to apartment. I miss it! Do you get trick or treaters? What are you handing out this year?
Now back to this mac and cheese that will knock your ghost printed socks off. The pumpkin is rich and has a touch of sweetness. The cheese is savory and melts beautifully. The jalapenos add just a slight kick of heat and also adds a little crunch when you take a (big) spoonful of macaroni and cheese.
You’re going to want to use pumpkin puree in this recipe. You can buy the store bought kind but if you want to take it that extra step, make your own fresh pumpkin puree. I do this with all our garden pumpkins, but if you don’t grow pumpkins, buy some pumpkins for Fall and then roast them up! Here’s my full instructions on how to make fresh pumpkin puree.
Boil your noodles. The recipe calls for elbow noodles but I also really like to use a variety of noodles. This is called “multi boxes of almost empty pasta”. Does this happen to you too? Lots of time for recipes I mix the pasta. For this one I used elbows and shells, both which suck up this cheesiness nicely.
- 2 cups elbow macaroni
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Dash of nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- Pinch of salt
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 jalapeno peppers - seeded and chopped
- 2 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Heat oven to 350 degrees.
- Make elbow macaroni according to box. Drain, set aside in baking dish.
- 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 and salt.
- Add in pumpkin puree, jalapeno peppers and 2 cups of shredded cheese, stirring until cheese is completely melted.
- Add cheese mixture to pasta in baking dish and stir until it's all coated.
- Top with 1/2 cup remaining shredded cheese.
- Bake for 30 minutes.