In my opinion, the basic ingredient in any healthy food makeover of favorite comfort food macaroni and cheese, has to be Annie's Organic Whole Wheat Shells And White Cheddar. I know that since Annie's uses shells instead of macaroni shaped pasta, that this technically takes the macaroni out of the macaroni and cheese. But let's not focus on such tiny details.
When I was a struggling college student, I had to stretch my food budget, and at the same time unfortunately also stretched my jeans size buying the standard macaroni and cheese you'd find 4 or 5 for a dollar. Yay, I could afford to eat! Today, with Annie's, I still get the one box dinner convenience of those other famous boxed macaroni and cheese brands, but in its healthiest version.
I use fat free organic milk and just a trace of Smart Balance Light Buttery Spread to make the Annie's macaroni and cheese come to life as healthfully as possible. The dish is easy to make; you just need to be sure to blend the organic cheddar cheese powder from the packet well with the rest of the mixture as like with any powdered cheese product, you can get clumping of the cheese if you aren't careful.
How does it taste? Great! The white cheddar gives the dish a nice tang and actually it's fun to have shells which tend to hold the cheese sauce better in its indentations anyway. Plus, I love that it uses an organic dairy product, and you don't have a laundry list of chemicals and food coloring a mile long on the box. At 270 calories per portion before cooking with just 5 grams of fat, 11 grams of protein and a nice amount of fiber to boot, it's a nutritional bargain.
Annie's Organic Whole Wheat Shells And White Cheddar is an EASY way to get whole wheat pasta into your kids--including the big kids known as other adults in your family!
TIP: Make this delicious macaroni and cheese even better by making a tuna casserole out of it. After cooking up the Annie's Organic Whole Wheat Shells And White Cheddar, just add a can of drained tuna in water, steamed broccoli and carrots and blend together. I then add a generous sprinkling of fat free cheddar cheese on top, let the cheese melt on top of the concoction in the microwave and serve.
FREEBIE: Annie's will send you "free loot" as they call it in the form of their trademark bunny logo refrigerator magnet, or "Think Organic", "Recycle", "Be Green" or "Peace" bumper stickers with a stamped, self-addressed envelope. Check it out here: http://www.annies.com/?id=30
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"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"
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Please note that I do not have an affiliation with any of the companies featured in this post--they are simply products I am personally familiar with. The views expressed are my opinion only and you should decide, along with your healthcare professionals, on the appropriateness for your personal use.
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