Beefy Macaroni and Cheese

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My kids and my husband love mac and cheese.  It is often a Sunday lunch that my husband will make for he and the kiddos…one of the few things he claims he can cook!  I saw this recipe, and thought it looked tasty, and a bit more complete than just a box of Kraft mac and cheese.  I found this over at realmomrecipes.com, but changed it up a bit.  This is a dish that is easy to make-ahead and seems like it would freeze well too.  It is true comfort food, at least for me…pasta and cheese!

Serves 8 for about $1.12/serving

INGREDIENTS:

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1 box elbow macaroni – I used whole wheat – ($1.28)

1 can (28 oz) purred tomatoes ($1.36)

1 small can tomato sauce – ($0.33)

3 cups low fat cheese….I used 1 cheddar and 2 mozzarella – (about $3.00)

1 lb lean ground beef or turkey – ($2.89)

DIRECTIONS:

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Brown meat and drain if necessary.  I used garlic, oregano, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, onion powder and basil to season the meat while it cooked.  Boil your water to cook your pasta per directions on package.

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When meat is browned, add tomatoes and tomato sauce, as well as more seasonings to flavor sauce.  Let simmer while pasta is cooking.

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Mix meat sauce, noodles and 2 cups of cheese in a large lasagna pan.  Stir well.

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Sprinkle remaining cheese on top and bake at 375 degrees for about 30-40 minutes.

Add some french bread, a salad and a fruit and veggie for a  complete dinner.

ENJOY!

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