Getting picky kids to eat healthier foods can be quite tricky and sometimes downright impossible. Most kids will go through a picky-eating stage at some point in their young lives in which they only want to eat foods that are visually appealing and palette friendly. Unfortunately, these foods tend to be unhealthy options such as burgers, French fries, chicken nuggets and, the ultimate favorite, ooey-gooey macaroni and cheese. Macaroni and cheese is comfort kid food at it’s finest, but it’s also high in calories, fat and simple carbs from white noodles as its base.
However, it is possible to give kids their favorite dish without having to resort to a box of Kraft Dinner every night. Create a healthier macaroni and cheese dish worth craving by using butternut squash in the sauce for a creamy texture and rich taste; reduced-fat milk and quinoa or brown rice pasta noodles for extra dietary fiber. Make this dish tonight and feel great about what you are serving your family!
- 2 cups cooked pasta, brown rice or quinoa based
- 1 small butternut squash, ~ 4 cups cubed squash
- 1 cup of milk, 1%
- ½ cup grated cheese, Parmesan
- 1 tsp. of butter, melted
- salt, to taste
- Cut butternut squash in half; place on roast pan or baking sheet with a drizzle of water. Bake at 350C for 30 minutes or until lightly browned, able to pierce with a fork. Remove squash from oven and let cool. Scoop out the insides away from the skin and set aside.
- Cook pasta according to package directions in boiling water. Once cooked through, drain and set aside in saucepan.
- Put cooled squash in blender along with milk and dash of salt; blend thoroughly until a creamy texture is achieved.
- Pour sauce over the pasta noodles; add melted butter and stir to combine. Add grated cheese and continue to stir until thoroughly mixed.