I mean… what’s not to love about a Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese!?
It’s your fav game day dip (spinach dip) meets mac and cheese. And it is absolutely the right thing to do. Clearly I’m having a spinach artichoke moment. If you saw the pizza I made yesterday, you’ll absolutely get it! We’ve got a pasta dish (non-mac and cheese based) if you want even more inspiration along these lines! Also a strata. More is more guys. Anyways – it’s comfort food season and that means a creamy baked Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese needs to be on your to-do list!
A quick word on substitutions:
- When it comes to cheese in a baked mac and cheese, you want to use something that’s going to melt REALLY well. I always dig a cheddar (extra sharp), fontina, gruyere, Monterey Jack or a Gouda! If you wanted to dot in a little brie, that would be excellent too.
- The panko topping… while it’s absolutely delish and not to be missed in my opinion, it’s optional. If you don’t want the crunch, be my guest and feel free to leave it off.
- Add ins are also loose. If you wanted to also stir in some cubed and roasted butternut squash, sweet potato, broccoli etc… be my guest. So long as it’s roasted or cooked ahead of time, it won’t alter the baking time of this dish. You just might need a large vessel for baking.
Need more mac and cheese inspiration:
Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese
A creamy Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese that takes a page from everyones favorite game day food… spinach artichoke dip!
- 1 pound medium shell pasta
- 1 quart milk
- 1 pound fresh spinach
- 1 15-ounce can artichoke hearts, drained, blotted dried and halved
- 8 tablespoons butter, divided
- 7 cups cheese (I use a mixture of fontina, extra sharp cheddar and gruyere)
- Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- 1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Drain.
Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, being careful not to bring to a full boil!
Melt 6 tablespoons of butter in a large pot and add the flour to make a roux. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk to cook the flour. After 2 minutes, while whisking, stream in the hot milk and continue to cook until thickened and smooth, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, add the cheese, spinach and artichokes and season with 1 teaspoon salt and pepper. Add the cooked macaroni and stir well. Pour into a 3-quart baking dish.
Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine the melted butter with the panko crumbs, and sprinkle on the top of the baking dish. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the macaroni is browned on the top. Serve as needed.
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