Spinach-Artichoke Macaroni and Cheese for “30 Days 30 Ways with Macaroni and Cheese

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When I was asked to come up with a recipe for a new twist on Macaroni and Cheese for Wisconsin Cheese and their upcoming “Macaroni Blog” I was so excited. They asked what type of cheese I wanted to use in my recipe, and I quickly said, “Fontina”. Since my three kids love Spinach-Artichoke Dip, I thought I would combine a simple macaroni and cheese recipe with spinach and artichokes making a comforting, creamy dish.

Here’s how: Start by boiling the noodles. Combine half-and-half, milk, flour, sea salt and pepper. Stir in spinach, artichokes and Fontina. Pour in a lightly greased 13-x 9-inch baking dish and top with panko breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese and melted butter.  Bake in the oven and that’s it. This recipe is wonderful for a main or side dish. My kids loved it, and I think you will too!

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Spinach-Artichoke Macaroni and Cheese

Cook Time:

55 minutes

Prep Times:

20 minutes

Yield:

8 to 10 servings

Ingredients:

8 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
1 cup half-and-half or whole milk
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 (10-ounce) package frozen spinach, thawed and drained
1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
3 1/2 cups shredded Wisconsin Fontina Cheese
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
1 cup shredded Wisconsin Parmesan Cheese
1/4 cup butter, melted

Preparation:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add pasta and cook according to package directions; drain well and set aside.

2. Whisk together half-and-half, flour, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl. Add in cooked macaroni, spinach, artichokes and Fontina Cheese; mixing well.

3. Pour macaroni mixture into a lightly greased 13-x 9-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and Parmesan Cheese; drizzle evenly with melted butter.

4. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately.

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