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November 5, 2020

Creamy Broccoli Mac and Cheese

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A Lily Love Affair shares a recipe for broccoli mac and cheese

 

Broccoli Mac and Cheese is the kid friendly, family loved weeknight meal you’ve been looking for!  Made with fresh broccoli florets, elbow macaroni and a combination of your favoites cheese – this easy dinner recipe will have them begging for seconds!

 

What better way to get your kids and family to eat their veggies than with a delicious bowl of Broccoli Mac and Cheese?  We’ll take two bowls, please!  

This easy dinner recipe is a true family favorite and easy to throw together during the week when you need something quick and tasty, but with loads of flavor.  

What’s great about this recipe, as well, is while we typically like our Broccoli Mac and Cheese with a combination of our favorite cheeses you can easily substitute for others you may like more.  Or, you can simply use one cheese such as sharp cheddar cheese.  

Because we know so many of you also love your Instant Pot, we created this recipe with instructs for both the IP and your stove top.  Both are delicious.  See the full Instant Pot Mac and Cheese with Broccoli recipe here.  

 

A large bowl of fresh broccoli florets

 

With the holidays quickly approaching, we love serving broccoli macaroni and cheese as a baked dish, as well.  Simply add to a baking dish, top with bread crumbs and some extra cheese, pop in the oven and you’re good to go with a delicious side.  It’s one of our most requested dinner recipes for Thanksgiving, Christmas and even game day.  

If you’re looking to add a bit more to this mac and cheese recipe, I also highly recommend adding chicken or even cauliflower.  We have tried it both ways and the addition makes this dish pure comfort food.  

 

A Lily Love Affair shares a recipe for a large white bowl of broccoli mac and cheese

 

TIPS FOR MAKING BROCCOLI MAC AND CHEESE

We like to make our broccoli macaroni and cheese recipes with a combination of sharp cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese and a bit of parmesan cheese.  However, feel free to add any others you might like more.  We have included a few of our favorites below.  

When possible, I also recommend shredding your own cheese as opposed to using pre-packaged cheese.  Pre-packed cheese is made with ingredients that help it not to clump in the package.  Shredding your own cheese will help it melt quicker and come out less ‘grainy’.  

If you like your mac and cheese recipes even more cheesy, feel free to slowly add more to your liking.  Similarly, if you’d like it to be more creamy, feel free to slowly add milk or half and half until the recipe has reached your desiged consistency.  

 

WHAT IS THE BEST CHEESE FOR MAC AND CHEESE? 

In general, you want to use a base of soft, creamy cheese like Monterey jack, combined with some medium and harder cheeses for flavor such as Cheddar.

Gruyere is a classic addition because it melts much like Cheddar, but has a lovely nutty flavor. Other classics include Gouda, Muenster, Parmesan, fontina, Havarti and Monterey Jack. Brie works well too, just make sure you remove the rind before mixing it in.

 

A Lily Love Affair shares a recipe for a large white bowl of broccoli mac and cheese

 

Now, let’s get to the good stuff – the details on how to make this crowd pleasing Broccoli Mac and Cheese!

Also, if you’re looking for a few other easy dinner recipes to try this week, here are a few of my favorites: 

 

A Lily Love Affair shares a recipe for a large white bowl of broccoli mac and cheese

 

This post may contain affiliate links. Using links to these sites means I may earn a percentage of the purchase at no cost to you. As an Amazon affiliate, I may recieve a percentage of qualifying purchases. Read the full disclosure here.

 

INREDIENTS FOR BROCCOLI MAC AND CHEESE 

  • 1 pound pasta shells (we like elbow macaroni, cavatappi, or cellentani shells)
  • 12 ounces fresh or frozen broccoli florets, ends trimmed, if preferred
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter 
  • 4 cups milk 
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups Grueyer cheese, shredded 
  • 2 cups Sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce 
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt 
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard (you can also use dijon mustard or dry mustard, as well)
  • Fresh black pepper, to taste 
  • 1 cup bread crumbs, if baking 

 

HOW TO MAKE BROCCOLI MAC AND CHEESE

  1. In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta according to package directions adding the broccoli during the last 3 minutes of cooking.  Drain well and set aside.  
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet or pot over medium heat, melt butter. Add the flour, then whisk until combined, about 30 seconds.
  3. Add milk and whisk until well combined.  While wisking, cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly thickened.  Be sure not to bring to a boil.
  4. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, salt, pepper, mustard and hot sauce.  Stir until all ingredients are well combined.
  5. Add the cooked macaroni with broccoli and stir well.  
  6. Serve hot and enjoy!  
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Creamy Broccoli Mac and Cheese

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SERVES/MAKES: 6 people

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound pasta shells (we like elbow macaroni, cavatappi, or cellentani shells)
  • 12 ounces fresh or frozen broccoli florets, ends trimmed, if preferred
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter 
  • 4 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups Sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups Grueyer cheese, shredded 
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce 
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard (you can also use dijon mustard or dry mustard, as well)
  • Fresh black pepper, to taste

Instructions:

  • In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta according to package directions adding the broccoli during the last 3 minutes of cooking.  Drain well and set aside.  
  • Meanwhile, in a large skillet or pot over medium heat, melt butter. Add the flour, then whisk until combined, about 30 seconds.
  • Add milk and whisk until well combined.  While wisking, cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly thickened.  Be sure not to bring to a boil.
  • Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, salt, pepper, mustard and hot sauce.  Stir until all ingredients are well combined.
  • Add the cooked macaroni with broccoli and stir well.
  • Serve hot and enjoy!  

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