Cheesy Mac and Trees
This recipe was tested by thousands of school students from coast to coast as part of a collaboration between Yum-o! and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. Originally created to be served in schools, we’ve adapted the recipe here for you to try at home.
Would you like to see this recipe on your school lunch menu? Visit the Alliance for a Healthier Generation’s website to learn how!
- 1 pound whole wheat or whole grain rotini or penne with lines
- 1 large head broccoli, trimmed and cut into small florets
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 2 cups low fat milk
- 2 1/2 cups shredded extra-sharp yellow cheddar cheese, divided
- 1/4 cup chives, chopped or 2 scallions, thinly sliced (optional)
- Pre-heat the broiler.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Salt the water and cook the pasta to al dente, according to the package directions (about 10-12 minutes total, depending on the brand). When the pasta has been cooking for a couple of minutes, add the broccoli to the water and finish cooking everything together, 8 minutes more.
- Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepot over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute, then whisk in the stock and milk. Let the sauce thicken to coat the back of a spoon; stir in 2 cups of cheese and season with salt and pepper.
- Drain the pasta and broccoli and toss with the sauce. Adjust the seasonings, to taste. Place in a large casserole dish and top with the remaining cheese, then place under the broiler to bubble and brown the top. When you remove from the oven, sprinkle with chives or scallions (if using) and serve.