Yes, you read that right! Mac’n Cheese Muffins it is!
This dish is one crowd pleaser for kids and adults alike. It helps tremendously that its portion controlled, easy to – make option for your next get together or a fun weeknight dinner.
This is one of my oldest recipes and when I got an exciting opportunity to collaborate with MOTHERDAIRY, using their fabulous cheeses, I just had to bring it out and share with all of you! Their cheese spread is just the perfect consistency for this dish. It adds the much-needed creamy character and a lovely soft flavour that melds beautifully with anything you want to pair it with. Do watch out for the #Instacookingclasses with Mother Dairy on Instagram where I’ll be sharing two recipes. This is the first recipe up on their #Instastories and I couldn’t be more excited as I really enjoy using Motherdairy products.
These muffins were a staple at all my children’s birthday parties and continue to be a regular at our dinner table. Everyone loves a luscious, delicious bite, especially with a crunchy crispy breadcrumb topping. They are also a wonderful hold all for vegetables. Finely chopped veggies add a sublime crunch and colour. They may look small, but they are certainly quite hearty! Did I mention, they are GREAT for school/office lunches too? Pack along some cucumber and carrot sticks, a piece of fruit and you got yourself a delightful tiffin!
I like to serve these muffins at home with a bunch of salad greens and my SIMPLE TOMATO SAUCE . You can leave it chunky or run it through the blender to make it smooth. The rich, velvety texture of mac’n cheese, thanks to the lush Mother Dairy’s Cheese Spread, balances beautifully with the bright, fresh flavour of this sauce.
These mac’n cheese muffins can be easily made ahead and stored in the refrigerator. Just take them out a few minutes before serving and reheat in the microwave or your oven. You can keep them ready in the muffin tray to bake at a later time too. Do keep in mind, they need to be cooled for at least 15-20 minutes before taking them out of the pan, to avoid breaking them up…this is experience talking!! 🙂
- Whole-wheat pasta works very well in this recipe.
- I have used olive oil and whole-wheat flour in the cheese sauce base instead of butter and all-purpose flour. You can certainly use those, if you wish.
- This recipe can be made all VEGAN by using, vegan cheese and non dairy milk if you’d like to.
- You can add any vegetable or maybe even some bacon/ roasted chicken/fish to the mac’n cheese mixture before baking.
I hope you’ll give these wonderful, happy little muffins a try. I’d love to hear from you! Please leave a comment below and share a picture of your creation on INSTAGRAM using the hashtag #tashasartisanfoods.
Mac'n Cheese Muffins
- 250 gms Macaroni
- 3 tbsp Extra virgin Olive oil
- 4 tbsp Wholewheat flour
- 500 ml Milk (skimmed)
- 200 gms MOTHERDAIRY Cheese Spread
- 1 Red bell pepper Finely chopped
- Parsley, small handful Finely chopped
- 1 tsp Red Chilli Flakes Add more if you prefer
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- Salt & Pepper to taste
For the topping:
- 3/4 cup Fresh breadcrumbs
- 2 Tbsp Extra virgin Olive oil
- Cook the pasta in plenty of water. Drain and keep aside.
- Heat olive oil in a pan. Add the chilli flakes and wholewheat flour.
- Cook the flour for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Add in the warm milk. Keep stirring, until it comes to a boil. Cook for a further 5-8 minutes until it is thickened.
- Once its thickened, turn off the heat and add Mother Dairy Cheese Spread. Stir well.
- Add the Italian seasoning and salt & pepper to taste.
- Now combine the pasta, bell peppers and parsley well. Taste and adjust for seasoning.
- Preheat your oven to 180C. Grease the cavities well of a 12- cup standard muffin tray.
- Spoon in this creamy pasta mixture, leaving about ½” from the top.
- Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture liberally over each cup.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the the sauce is all bubbling and the breadcrumbs are browned on top.
- Let the muffins cool in the pan for about 30 minutes before taking them out carefully. You will need to loosen them from the edges with a butter knife. Enjoy!
- You can leave the tray to cool completely in the refrigerator overnight and take the muffins out as desired in the morning for the school tiffin.
For making the topping:
- Take 3/ 4 slices of any bread of your choice, break it up and put it your mixie/food processor or coffee grinder. Pulse till its ground into crumbs. Take it out in a bowl and mix in the olive oil.