Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese. It’s the perfect way to add a little fall into your favorite comfort food.
Why no that’s not Velveeta. That mac and cheese gets it’s gorgeous color from PUMPKIN. But go ahead and let the kids think that if you need to. Once they’ve had a bite they won’t even care that it’s pumpkin because it’s just that dang good.
I’m a big fan of (almost) all things pumpkin. Next to boots, Italian Hot Chocolate and scarves it’s my favorite part of fall. I try to incorporate pumpkin into as many things as possible. Last count I think there are a whopping 17 recipes featuring pumpkin on the site. Proof is in the pumpkin.
Mac and cheese is one of those dishes that is a fantastic canvas to add additional flavors. Like pumpkin.
What pasta do you use for macaroni and cheese?
Elbow noodles are the most traditional pasta variety used for macaroni and cheese, however, it is NOT the only option.
What is Macaroni?
Macaroni is any variety of pasta that is formed into a narrow tube. Like elbow noodles, penne, rigatoni and ziti. All would be perfect in this pumpkin macaroni and cheese.
What is al dente?
Al dente, means to the tooth in Italian. Pasta should be cooked so as to be still firm when you bite into it.
To make this decadent Pumpkin Macaroni and cheese you’ll want to cook the pasta until just shy of al dente. Don’t fret, you won’t be eating under-cooked pasta. It will finish baking in the oven.
If you’re like me and like a little texture, finish baking the dish under the broiler for the last few minutes to give the top a little texture. You can also get texture by lightly sprinkling breadcrumbs/panko over the pasta prior to baking. Crispy crumbles of bacon or pancetta would also be divine. Because in this case, extra is a good thing.
If you’re looking for a seasonal twist on the classic mac n cheese give this creamy pumpkin version a try. I think you’ll like it.
If you happen to have doggos, this recipe only requires 1/4 cup of pumpkin puree, there’s plenty leftover to whip up a batch of HOMEMADE PUMPKIN & PEANUT BUTTER DOG TREATS!
- 1 pound penne pasta
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 1/4 cups whole milk
- kosher salt/pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 egg yolks
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 12x8" baking dish with cooking spray.
- Heat large stockpot of generously salted water to boiling. When water comes to a boil, add pasta. Cook until just shy of al dente. Drain; set aside.
- In 2-quart heavy saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add flour. Using whisk, stir until blended. Add milk; cook and stir until mixture comes to a boil. Stir in nutmeg and season with salt to taste.
- Reduce heat to low continue cooking until mixture thickens enough to coat back of wooden spoon. Check seasoning adjust if necessary.
- Stir cheese, pumpkin and egg yolks into sauce until combined. Add cooked pasta. Stir to combine. Pour mixture into baking dish.
- Bake approximately 15 to 20 minutes or until top is golden brown.
Top with a sprinkling of bread crumbs or panko for additional texture.
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