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Baked Spinach Macaroni and Cheese

baked spinach macaroni cheese
  • (3 Tbsp.) plain breadcrumbs
  • (1 tsp.) extra-virgin olive oil
  • (1/4 tsp.) paprika
  • (10 oz.) package frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • (1 3/4 cups) skim milk, divided
  • (3 Tbsp.) all-purpose flour
  • (2 cups) extra-sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
  • (1 cup) low-fat cottage cheese
  • (1/8 tsp.) ground nutmeg
  • (1/4 tsp.) salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • (2 cups) whole-wheat elbow macaroni or penne

Baked Spinach Macaroni and Cheese

A lower calorie version of a classic comfort food made with whole-wheat pasta and flavors of spinach and sharp cheddar cheese.

Preparation Time
About 20 minutes
Cook Time
About 40 minutes


  1. 1Preheat oven to 450°F. Fill a large pot with 2 quarts cold water, place over high heat and bring to a boil.
  2. 2In a small bowl, combine breadcrumbs, oil and paprika. Set aside.Place a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add 1 1/2 cups milk, cook until steaming.

  3. 3Meanwhile, whisk together flour and 1/4 cup milk in a small bowl. Add to pot while whisking and continue to whisk for 2-3 minutes, until sauce starts to thicken.

  4. 4Remove from heat, add cheddar cheese and stir until melted. Add cottage cheese, nutmeg, salt and pepper, stir until combined.
  5. 5Add pasta to boiling water, cook 4 minutes. Meanwhile, spray an 8x8 pan with cooking spray. Drain pasta, add to cheese sauce, stir to combine.

  6. 6Pour 1/2 of pasta into pan and spread into an even layer. Top with spinach, other 1/2 of pasta and breadcrumbs on top.
  7. 7Bake 25-30 minutes or until golden. Enjoy!

Nutritional Information

Serving Size: 1/6 of dish

Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories 576
  • Total Fat 22 g
  • Total Carbohydrate 63 g
  • Protein 37 g
  • Cholesterol 69 mg
  • Sodium 917 mg
  • Fiber 9 g

Additional Information

Recipe Category: Dinner

Recipe Subcategory: Pastas and Pizzas

Recipe Ethnicity: N/A

Dietetic Info:
  • Glycemic Index:
  • Gluten Free: No

Vegetarian/Allergen Info: Contains Dairy

NOTE: Glycemic Index Scale: Low=0-55, Medium=56-69, High=70 or greater.