Spicy Stovetop Veggie Mac & Cheese

When I saw The Comfort of Cooking's recipe for this, I almost needed a drool cup. It looks so perfect, filled with color and creaminess! I have adapted this recipe for those reasons, adding a few flavors of my own. * Note: no butter is used, just olive oil. This is a healthier version of regular Mac!

Cook time: 35 to 40 minutes

You will need:
1/2 broccoli, chopped small
1/4 red pepper, diced
1/4 green pepper, diced
1/4 yellow squash, diced ** next time I'd like to substitute this with corn!
7-10 baby carrots, sliced thin
1/4 yellow onion, chopped
2 cups pasta of your choice, I used elbow
1/4 cup olive oil
3 tbs all purpose flour
2 cups milk (1%)
2 cups (8 oz) Shredded Sharp Cheddar
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tbs garlic powder
Salt & pepper
1/4 cup panko flakes or breadcrumbs

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Boil water in medium pot. Line baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray (or use a little olive oil)
  2. Place broccoli, peppers, squash, carrots and onion on baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, until veggies are soft.
  3. Cook your pasta according to box. Drain and set aside.
  4. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is hots, whisk in flour and cook for 1 minute. SLOWLY whisk in your milk, stirring constantly until mixture thickens. 
  5. Remove from heat and stir in cheese until melted. Add the macaroni, roasted veggies, pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and salt & pepper to your cheese mixture. Stir until all is distributed throughout. 
  6. Pour into casserole dish. Cover top layer with your flakes or breadcrumbs.
  7. Now it's broil time! My favorite. Broil casserole dish in oven for about 5 minutes, or until golden brown.

Dinner for 1 tonight, but I have 2 dozen GORGEOUS roses to look at! 

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