Macaroni Ham and Cheese

Macaroni Ham and Cheese Recipe

This recipe for Macaroni Ham and Cheese is one that I had hoped to make, and post, before the end of 2013.  Unfortunately, that didn't happen. Please forgive me if your New Year's resolution is to lose weight and get fit and healthy in 2014. Guess what? That's my resolution too, and I plan on starting...tomorrow. LOL

The good (and healthier) news with this delicious recipe is that I used fat free evaporated milk in place of whole milk and I bumped up the nutrition level by adding in some broccoli and cauliflower. See? I didn't forget about our resolutions all together. Pretty close, but not totally!

Macaroni Ham and Cheese Recipe

This casserole freezes beautifully so even if you have leftovers, wrap them well and stick them in the freezer so you'll have another meal ready for one of those "I don't feel like cooking" days!

Serves: 8-10     Prep time: 20 minutes     Bake time: 20 minutes

1 - 1 lb. ham steak, cut into bite sized pieces
1 box of penne pasta
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cans (12 ounces) fat-free evaporated milk
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground mustard
4 cups (16 ounces) shredded Colby cheese
1 package "Steam Fresh" frozen broccoli and cauliflower
1 cup Parmesan cheese

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
-In a large skillet over medium heat, brown the ham. Set aside.
-Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the package directions but cut the cooking time by 2 minutes. Drain and keep warm.
-In a medium sauce pan, melt the butter. Add the flour to the butter and stir over medium/low heat for 1-2 minutes.
-Whisk the evaporated milk into the butter flour mixture and increase the heat to medium. Add the salt, pepper, smoked paprika and ground mustard.
-Continue cooking until the mixture gets thick and creamy.
-Turn off the heat and stir the shredded cheese into the thickened sauce until completely melted.
-Meanwhile, cook the veggies in the microwave according to the package directions. Drain.
-Pour the cheese sauce over the drained pasta and stir well to combine.
-Add the ham and drained veggies into the pasta cheese mixture. Stir well.
-Pour the pasta into a prepared casserole dish and top with the Parmesan cheese.
-Bake uncovered for 20 minutes and serve.

This Macaroni Ham and Cheese is a wonderful comfort food meal and is the perfect dinner for any cold and snowy evening. As I type this, the snow is piling up outside and the temperatures are set to plummet to below zero degrees in the next day or so. Wowza! It's at times like these when I'm thankful to have a little extra meat on my bones to help keep me warm! LOL  Is it so wrong?

For those of you who are (or are planning on) eating, and drinking, healthier in 2014, I have a few new fun and whimsical glasses that you just might appreciate...

Smoothie Glasses
If there is ever anything I can paint for you, please don't hesitate to contact me or visit my shop.
                Kudos Kitchen By ReneĆ© ~ Where food and art collide on a regular basis!

Until we eat (and drink) again,

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