Macaroni and Cheese Soup with Broccoli

I found this recipe back when I was on Weight Watchers and lying to myself that I was ever going to lose these last 5-10 lbs.

I am not. They are a part of me. Like my decisiveness and loudness they are not going anywhere.

But this recipe I have kept as it is a great freezer meal, very easy, healthy and doesn’t taste like a skinny meal. Though mine does not look quite as pretty as her picture.

Skinnytaste says: “A classic, kid-friendly comfort dish made into a soup. A great way to sneak some veggies into those picky tummies while enjoying a tasty warm bowl of soup.”

Ummm unless your kids eat broccoli, they are not going to eat this soup. Period the end. Look at it. Kids are not idiots, they can see the broccoli. I do love her enthusiasm about it though. And the carrots do go unnoticed by my carrot-hating first born.

Also mine is never very soup-like. It is more like your standard mac and cheese. Which is just fine by me because it is very good either way.

 Skinny Macaroni and Cheese Soup with Broccoli
With slight modifications from Skinnytaste (she has really good photos on her site of the steps)

Ingredients:
6 oz dry elbow macaroni
1 shallot, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
2 1/2 cups fat free low sodium chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
1 cup milk
pinch nutmeg
1/2 tsp dry mustard (I never have this)
salt and fresh pepper to taste
2 cups (about 10 oz) broccoli florets, chopped into small pieces
1-1/2 or 2 cups 2% shredded sharp cheddar
2 tbsp Parmesan cheese

Directons:

  1. Boil pasta in salted water according to package directions for al dente. Drain and set aside.
  2. Chop onion, carrot, celery, garlic 
  3. In a large soup pot or dutch oven, melt light butter. Add chopped vegetables and sauté on low heat until soft, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add flour and fresh pepper to the pot and stir until smooth. Slowly add chicken broth, milk, nutmeg and dry mustard powder; whisking constantly. Set heat to medium-high until it comes to a boil. Cover and cook on low about 10-15 minutes.
  5. Add broccoli florets, Parmesan cheese, and stir well. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Cook uncovered until broccoli is cooked, about 5 minutes or more to your liking.
  6. Add cheddar, mixing well until cheese melts and immediately remove from heat. *Add cooked elbows and mix well, adjust salt and pepper if needed. Eat right away so the pasta doesn’t absorb all the broth. 

If freezing do not combine. Freeze pasta and broccoli together and put cheese sauce in a freezer bag on top. Otherwise everything will be overcooked and mushy when you re-heat. Trust.

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