Stovetop Mardis Gras Mac & Cheese

A healthy and spicy Cajun-inspired version of the classic cheesy pasta dish. This recipe easily doubles or even triples if you need to serve several people this creamy mac and cheese dish inspired by everyone's favorite Louisiana celebration--Mardi Gras! Stovetop Mardi Gras Mac and Cheese comes together quickly and easily to you can celebrate the Big Easy whenever you'd like.
Photo by Lauren Z.
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PREP TIME

15

minutes

TOTAL TIME

35

minutes

SERVINGS

2

servings

PREP TIME

15

minutes

TOTAL TIME

35

minutes

SERVINGS

2

servings

Ingredients

  • 4

    ounces, about 1 cup, uncooked whole wheat elbow macaroni or other small pasta

  • 2

    links cooked turkey andouille sausage, chopped

  • 1/2

    tablespoon butter

  • 1/4

    cup white or yellow onion, diced

  • 1/2

    cup bell pepper, diced

  • 2

    garlic cloves, minced

  • 1/2

    tablespoon flour

  • 1/2

    cup 1% milk, preferably organic

  • 1/2

    teaspoon creole or Dijon mustard

  • 1/4

    teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1/4

    teaspoon cayenne pepper hot sauce

  • 1/4

    teaspoon paprika

  • pinch dried oregano

  • pinch ground cayenne pepper

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

  • 2

    tablespoons 1/3-less-fat neufchatel cream cheese, at room temperature

  • 1/2

    cup 50% reduced fat cheddar cheese, freshly shredded

Directions

Cook pasta according to package instructions, to al dente; drain. While pasta cooks, add andouille sausage to a medium-sized saucepan set over medium-high heat. Cook sausage until lightly browned and crisp, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Transfer cooked sausage to a bowl. Reduce stove heat to medium. Add butter, onion, and bell pepper to the saucepan. Cook, stirring often, until veggies start to soften, about 5 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds. Whisk the flour into the mixture for about 1 minute. Slowly whisk in the milk until the mixture thickens, about 2-3 minutes. Reduce stove heat to low. Stir in the mustard, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, paprika, oregano, ground cayenne pepper, and salt&pepper to taste. Stir in the neufchatel and cheddar cheese until fully melted. Stir in cooked pasta and sausage.

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