Kids love mac and cheese. It has been a staple with my kids and they are picky with a capital P. They are not fans of veggies, so I have to be creative with the way I present them. In the past I have sneaked them into Carrot Muffins and Spinach Muffins. Today, I am sharing a recipe for some deliciously cheesy Hidden Veggie Baked Mac and Cheese.It is so good that you won't believe there are veggies in there. If you are still craving mac and cheese try this exciting variation - One Pot Chili Mac and Cheese. Be sure to also try our Chili Macaroni Casserole.
Most of this hidden veggie baked mac and cheese recipe is made on the stove top. You just throw it in the oven for the last bit to bake.
You can certainly up the level of cheesiness in this recipe. I thought 2 ½ cups were plenty, but you could go for 3 cups and have the ultimate cheesy meal. We used a cheddar/jack mix but you can use all cheddar if you want.
The secret veggie in the baked mac and cheese? Carrots! I pureed them ahead of time and froze them in an ice cube tray. They I just popped them out as needed.
I used one cup of thawed pureed carrot, but as with the cheese, you can up the amount of carrot. If you choose to do this, taste it as you go along to make sure you are not adding so much that it changes the taste of the dish.
After adding the milk and mixing all the ingredients, I poured it into a 2 ½ quart CorningWare baking dish and popped it in the oven.
Thirty minutes later, my kids were chowing down on some scrumptious mac and cheese never knowing that they were getting some nutritious carrots as well. Mission accomplished!
This is a great recipe to bring to a potluck. This would also be delicious to make with some chicken, ham or other kind of meat mixed in. Yum! I'm getting hungry just thinking about it.
Have you heard about Eat At Home Meal Plans? If the price of eating out or the decision of what to make for dinner each night is stressing you out, then you must try these meal plans. There is one for every diet and appetite.
Hidden Veggie Baked Mac and Cheese - Food Fun Friday
- 16 oz package of elbow macaroni
- 6 tablespoons of butter
- 2 ½ cups of a mixture of shredded cheddar and jack cheeses
- 1 cup of milk
- 1 cup pureed carrot
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Boil pasta according to package directions.
- Drain and return to pot.
- Stir in butter over low heat until butter is melted. Remove from heat.
- Stir in cheese.
- Add in defrosted carrot puree and stir to combine.
- Add milk, salt and pepper.
- Transfer to a 2 ½ quart greased baking dish and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
If you liked these Hidden Veggie Baked Mac and Cheese check out:
Rebecca | Let's Eat Cake
Great way to sneak some veggies in a comfort food dish! I also love trying butternut squash in my mac and cheese - makes it super creamy!
Adriana Lopez Martin
Very clever hiding veggies for the kiddos to eat their food. At home we love veggies but our grandson does not like any green so it is challenging at times. Thanks for the tip!
yessss! This is the perfect recipe for me. Looks VERY tasty! Now, this recipe will be one of my favorites. Great recipe. I like all the ingredients in it. thank you.
Bintu | Recipes From A Pantry
Ah what a great way to hide some veggies. This would definitely go down a treat with my kids!
I love the carrot in there! It's not only healthier than the traditional version, but prettier, too!
Hi Maria, Yes they were boiled before being pureed.
Did you boil the carrots before you pureed them?
Hi Kelly, I actually didn't notice the color was that different from mac and cheese we have gotten at restaurants or the boxed stuff. My family didn't notice anything out of the ordinary. You can try sprinkling some Parmesan cheese on top and hope that distracts. 🙂
How do you disguise the bright orange color of the carrots? I can definitely tell there's something else in there besides cheese, so my kids and husband will as well.
I haven't, but wonder if cauliflower would work well too.
Have you tried using different veggies with this too? I have some textural issues and if I can work veggies into a meal anywhere without having to choke them down that's a major plus!
I must try this! My kids are so stinking picky. I doubt they will even eat this mac n cheese but heck it's worth a try. They notice when I try different hot dogs and even different boxed mac n cheese...anything different they notice but i am going to try this out! thanks for sharing:)