I do love a good macaroni and cheese. Last winter I made an awesome noodle-y, cheese-y, butternut squash casserole called Butternut Squash Bake, and let me tell you that it was soooooo good that I decided to try another one. I was not disappointed!
This recipe was super easy and quick. With the exception of the tediousness of peeling and dicing a squash, the rest was relatively quick work.
Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
12 oz. dried rigatoni
1 & 1/2 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed (3 & 1/2 cups)
2 & 3/4 cups milk, divided
1/4 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour
8 oz. asiago cheese, divided
1/4 cup panko
2 T butter, melted
Preheat oven to 400*
1. Lightly butter or spray a 3-quart casserole dish and set aside.
2. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain; transfer to a large bowl.
3. In a large saucepan combine the squash and 2 & 1/2 cups of milk over medium-high heat. Bring to boiling and reduce heat to medium, simmering until the squash is fork tender, 18 to 20 minutes. Stir together remaining milk and 1/4 cup flour; stir into squash mixture. Bring to boiling; cook until thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in 6 oz. of the asiago* until melted.
4. Add squash mixture to pasta and toss well to combine. Transfer to the baking dish.
5. Combine the panko and butter with the remaining 2 oz. of asiago. With a fork, stir together until ingredients are well blended and there are no chunks. Sprinkle over the top of the butternut squash and pasta mixture.
6. Bake casserole at 400* for 20 minutes or until heated through and topping is browned.
*I buy asiago by the block (or triangle as it were) and shredded it myself. Much cheaper 🙂
Perfect as a side dish or a vegetarian meal by itself!
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