OH HEY. Thanksgiving is officially less then 1 month away. Know what that means? Your face is going to be assaulted with a bunch of recipes that involve sweet potatoes, cinnamon, and of course… mac n’ cheese.
This particular mac n’ cheese was totally an experiment and I had 0 idea how it was going to work out. I DEE KAY.. something about a squashy texture mixed with cheese and pasta just made me think “what the heck are you doing Mel?”.. but it worked out so, so wonderfully.
Like, w o n d e r f u l l y. I can’t even express it to you. The whole thing was gone within an hour of me making it, and that says a lot, seeing as it was 2:30 in the afternoon and we had just gotten back from a lunch date.
For realz. I had to do like, 4,000 crunches that night.
So anyway – if you’re into mac n’ cheese, and you’re wanting to get into the festive Thanksgiving spirit.. make this!
butternut squash + bacon mac n’ cheese
25 ounces pre-chopped butternut squash
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoona black pepper
1/2 tablespoon dried thyme
1lb pasta of choice (i used gemelli’s)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup milk
1/2 cup mozzarella
1/2 cup cheddar cheese
5 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped
Preheat your oven to 400.
Toss butternut squash with 2 T olive oil, 1/2 black pepper and dried thyme. Add to a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, flip the pieces of squash, and bake for an addition 20 minutes. In the meantime, cook your pasta until al dente in boiling water. Drain, add remaining olive oil, toss, and set aside.
When squash is fully cooked, add it to a bowl and mash with a potato masher until it has a consistency close to mashed potatoes.
Heat up your butter in a saucepan on medium heat. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add in milk, mozzarella cheese, cheddar cheese, and remaining black pepper. Whisk until the cheese melts, then add in your cooked pasta. Toss pasta and cheese mixture together until fully coated.
Add your mac n’ cheese to a greased baking dish then top with chopped bacon. Bake for 15-20 minutes, then enjoy! xx M