A wholesome homemade mac and cheese made with whole wheat macaroni, peas, carrots and ham. This recipe is perfect for freezing and using leftover meat (chicken, turkey, roast pork, tuna) and veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, sweet peppers).
2cupsraw whole wheat macaroni375 g box
2Tbspcanola oil or butter
½cuponionchopped (1/2 onion)
½cupceleryfinely diced (2 stalks)
2cupssharp cheddar cheese
2Tbspchopped fresh parsleydill or tarragon
1 1/2cupsdiced cooked ham
In large pot, bring water to boil and cook macaroni al dente (slightly firm). Drain and set macaroni aside.
In large pot, heat oil or butter over medium heat. Add onions and celery and cook until tender, about 3 minutes.
Add flour and mix well. Allow to cook for 1 minute.
Gradually whisk in milk until sauce thickens.
Remove from heat and stir in cheese until melted and mixed in.
Add carrots, frozen peas (not thawed), black pepper, parsley, ham and cooked macaroni.
Transfer to a lightly greased 3 quart (3 litre) casserole dish or a 9x13 inch baking pan.
Bake in preheated oven at 350°F (180°C) for 25 to 30 minutes or until heated through.
Freeze before baking.
Cool mix completely before freezing to avoid condensation and ice crystals.
Freeze in a well sealed casserole dish, aluminum foil pan or freezer bag.
To freeze in a container, cover top with a layer of aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Cover with well sealing lid or aluminum foil.
Or transfer prepared mix into a large freezer bag. Remove air from bag, flatten and place on flat surface to freeze.
Label with date, recipe name and cooking instructions and use within 3 months.
Cooking Instructions for Frozen Mac & Cheese
Thaw in fridge overnight.
If casserole is in freezer bag, transfer thawed ingredients to 3L casserole dish.
Bake in preheated oven at 350°F (180°C) for 25 to 30 minutes or until heated through. If still slightly frozen, increase cooking time as needed.
Replace ham with cooked chicken, turkey, pork or tuna. Replace frozen peas with frozen broccoli, cauliflower, sweet peppers, spinach, etc. Sprinkle cheese or panko crumbs on top before baking.