Saturday, March 7, 2009

Beef, Cheese, and Noodle Bake

This family-friendly casserole is a great way to incorporate more vegetables into children's food. For creamiest results, do not overbake. With more than 200 milligrams of calcium, this dish is a good source of the bone-building mineral.

8 servings (serving size: about 1 cup)
* 1 (8-ounce) package small elbow macaroni
* Cooking spray
* 1 cup prechopped onion
* 1 cup preshredded carrot
* 2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
* 1 pound lean ground sirloin
* 1 cup tomato sauce
* 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1 cup fat-free milk
* 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
* 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
* 1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) 2% reduced-fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese (such as Cracker Barrel), divided

Preheat oven to 350°.

Cook pasta according to the package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Lightly coat pasta with cooking spray.

Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion and carrot, and sauté 4 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add ground beef; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Add tomato sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Cook for 2 minutes or until most of liquid evaporates.

Add pasta to beef mixture in pan, stirring to combine. Spoon pasta mixture into an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Place milk, flour, nutmeg, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium saucepan; stir with a whisk until blended. Cook over medium heat 2 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add 1 cup cheese, stirring until smooth. Pour cheese mixture over pasta mixture; stir. Top evenly with remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 283 (24% from fat)
Fat: 7.7g (sat 4.2g,mono 2.4g,poly 0.7g)
Protein: 22.3g
Carbohydrate: 30.1g
Fiber: 2.1g
Cholesterol: 46mg
Iron: 3.1mg
Sodium: 622mg
Calcium: 209mg

source by:
recipes by: Joy Zacharia, Cooking Light
Photo: Jan Smith


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