Butternut Squash Mac n Cheese

Butternut Squash Mac n Cheese

1 butternut squash
1 pkg. rotini pasta
2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp butter
1 cup 2% milk 
1/4 cup cheese
seasonings to taste

1. Peel and cube butternut squash.
2. Steam the cubed squash until tender and soft (about 25-30 minutes)
3. remove squash cubes from the steamer and place in a bowl. Mash with a fork until a creamy consistency is reached. Set aside. ( * for any of you who need to see a video demonstration of this part, please scroll down to the end of this post! *)
4. melt butter in a saucepan then add flour and whisk with a wire whisk until the butter is completely coated. 
5. Pour in the milk and continue stirring with a whisk.
6. Add the pureed butternut squash to the roux (white sauce that you prepared in the steps above) and then season to taste.
7. Add 1/4 cup cheese. Only add at 1 tbs at a time and taste after each addition. You might find that you dont need the whole 1/4 cup! 
6. pour over boiled rotini noodles and serve. I garnish mine with whatever fresh herbs I have in the kitchen in order to brighten the flavors.

Print Recipe Here

Nutrient Analysis 


Pictured above are two nutrient labels for two different Mac n Cheese recipes. The first is a standard recipe that includes equal parts flour and butter, Milk (full fat), cheese, and noodles. For eight servings, the standard recipe comes to a whopping 430 calories, with over 19% of that coming from fat! yikes! The variation analysis is my butternut squash recipe. As you can tell from the recipe above,  all I did was cut down the cheese to a 1/4 cup and instead of using whole milk, I used 2%.  I then replaced the other cup and a half of cheese with steamed butternut squash. These two changes brought the total calories down from 430 to 270 calories.  But the most amazing part is the Fat which was brought down from 22g to 4g, with trans fat being ZERO! Cholesterol and sodium also improved, and we even added a little fiber to the dish!! (major score). Protein and calcium did go down in the butternut squash recipe but are still at sufficient levels. Overall this was a huge success in our household.  My family LOVED this recipe and you might find that your family does too! If you dont, well that's totally fine as well :) I really wanted to do this though to show that one simple swap can have a HUGE impact on overall nutrition quality. So next time you are in the kitchen, think about these things and try to incorporate more vegetables into whatever dish you are making. It can make all the difference in the world. Good luck! :)

 butternut squash demonstration

Video demonstration for anyone who needs a visual on the preparation steps of butternut squash. I'm still new to this whole video thing, so bear with me! :) But hopefully, this could be of some help to those who have never worked with butternut squash. Just take your time and go through the steps below.