Simple Mac and Cheese Recipe

Nov 12 Post - Simple Mac and Cheese Title - Deborah Ward

Simple Mac and Cheese

A Satisfying Comfort Food

Life is hectic. I long for the days when the kids were little and didn’t have crazy schedules. Alas, those days are gone. Now, I have to contend with dance classes and various doctors’ appointments. Oh, and add to that all of their social engagements. Yesterday was one of those days. Crazy, crazy, crazy! So, when it came time for dinner, I had two options: take-out or make it simple.

As always, I chose the make it myself simple route. I hate paying a small fortune for food that I could easily make myself. Since time was short, I decided on a Simple Mac and Cheese dish. Shells and cheese actually, but let’s not split hairs.

For those busy nights, I also like to keep bags of frozen veggies in the freezer. You know, the ones that you can microwave right in the bag. If you want to add some meat to it, you can throw in some cooked bacon (and jalapenos) or some already grilled chicken. I believe you can find that in the produce section of most supermarkets.

Gather all of your ingredients. I like to have mine measured out and ready since we’re making a roux and things happen so quick. Once you have boiled your pasta, drain it in a colander and set aside. Use the same pot you used to boil the pasta, to make the sauce. (One pot, less cleaning!)

Get your pot nice and hot, and then add the butter. Once it is melted, add the flour and whisk, whisk, whisk! Once the butter and flour are completely combined, add milk and whisk until thickened.

I was recently teaching my daughter how to make a roux. She complained that it wasn’t getting thick. I told her that that is how it works. It’s thin, it’s thin, and then bam! Thick!

Now that your sauce has reached the desired thickness, add the cheese. For my mac and cheese, I add: cheddar, mozzarella, and a wild card. It really depends on what I feel like that day or what I have on hand. Stir until completely melted.

When your cheesy sauce is ready, add the pasta back into the pot and stir. I keep my heat on low during this step to make sure everything gets warmed back up.

Serve and Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 16 oz pasta (macaroni, shells, penne…whatever)
  • 6 tbps flour6 tbsp butter (not margarine)
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 3 cups of cheese (you can use 3 cups of the same or mix it up and use three different)
  • Salt and pepper to taste.

How to:

  1. Cook Pasta according to the instructions on the box. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a large pot, melt butter. Once melted, add flour and whisk until completely combined.
  3. Add milk and whisk until it reaches desired thickness.
  4. Add cheese to pot and stir until melted.
  5. Add pasta to pot and stir until combined.
  6. Serve hot and enjoy.

Here’s a Printable Recipe just for you…

5 from 1 reviews
Simple Mac and Cheese Recipe
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A Simple and delicious Mac and Cheese recipe from Life With Lorelai's Regular Contributor, Deborah Ward.
from:
Type: Main
Ingredients:
  • 16 oz pasta (macaroni, shells, penne…whatever)
  • 6 tbps flour
  • 6 tbsp butter (not margarine)
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 3 cups of cheese (you can use 3 cups of the same or mix it up and use three different)
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
Directions:
  1. Cook Pasta according to the instructions on the box. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a large pot, melt butter.
  3. Once melted, add flour and whisk until completely combined.
  4. Add milk and whisk until it reaches desired thickness.
  5. Add cheese to pot and stir until melted.
  6. Add pasta to pot and stir until combined.
  7. Serve hot and enjoy.
Notes
Suggested add-ins:
Bacon
Grilled Chicken
Jalapenos
3.5.3208

 

Don’t you just love simple and delicious meals like this Mac and Cheese? I know, I do!

Visit Deborah at her blog, Kentucky to Cali!

Do you have a favorite comfort food recipe?

What do you like to add to your Mac and Cheese?

 

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Roasted Red Potato & Bell Pepper Side Dish Recipe

Roasted Red Potato & Bell Pepper Recipe

A Simple and Tasty Side Dish

 

This recipe is incredibly simple, yet the flavors and aromas are amazing. I served this along side my Italian Stuffed Chicken (watch for the recipe coming soon), and Arugula Salad with Tomato and Pignolias.

The peppery arugula with the fresh tomatoes and nutty crunch of pignolias is a healthy and delicious way to round out the meal.

Roasted Red Potato and Bell Pepper is the perfect side dish with Italian Stuffed Chicken as they can cook side-by-side in the oven. Both dishes share the bell pepper ingredient, so there are no worries about what to do with any left-over peppers.

Here’s what you’ll need:

Red Potatoes, Bell Pepper, Italian Herbs Seasoning, Olive Oil, Salt and Pepper. That’s it. It couldn’t be any simpler.

 

Directions:

Chop the Red Potatoes into bite-sized chunks. Cut the Bell Pepper into small strips. Toss potatoes and pepper in a large bowl with a little Olive Oil and  Italian Herbs Seasoning, Salt, and Pepper to taste. How quick and easy is that?!

Place in a 400° F oven for about 30 to 40 minutes.

This dish is the perfect oven companion for the Italian Stuffed Chicken. I used red bell peppers, because that is what my other recipe called for, but you can use any color or colors you choose.

Roasted Red Potato and Bell Pepper Side Dish–a simple and tasty recipe.

Do you have any great companion recipes?

 

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~Lorelai

 

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Tomato & Grilled Bell Pepper Salad

 

Tomato & Grilled Bell Pepper Salad

A Tasty Side Dish for Any Meal

 

Tomato and Grilled Bell Pepper Salad is a perfect side dish for a barbecue or any meal. It’s quick, easy, and tasty, tasty, tasty! Of course, this salad is best with fresh-from-your-garden produce, but it is delicious any time of year. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

This salad features very simple ingredients: Bell Peppers, Tomatoes, Feta Cheese, fresh Basil, Olive Oil, and Sea Salt.

Directions:

Chop the bell peppers into bite-sized chunks, and dress them with a little olive oil and sea salt to taste. Place the bell peppers on the grill. (This can be done on the stove top in a grill pan as well.) Chop the tomato, and chiffonade the basil.

When the bell peppers are grilled, combine with tomatoes in a bowl. Add the feta cheese and basil. Toss and serve.

Here’s a Printable Version of this Recipe:

5 from 1 reviews
Tomato & Grilled Bell Pepper Salad
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
A beautiful salad with fresh tomato and grilled bell pepper.
from:
Type: Salad
Ingredients:
  • Tomato (multiple colors if you like)
  • Bell Pepper (multiple colors if you like)
  • Feta Cheese
  • Fresh Basil
  • Olive Oil
  • Coarse Sea Salt
  • **NOTE** - Adjust amount of tomato and bell pepper for the number of people you are serving.
Directions:
  1. Core and cut the Bell Peppers into bite-sized chunks
  2. Drizzle with a little Olive Oil
  3. Sprinkle with Coarse Sea Salt (to taste)
  4. Put the Bell Peppers on the Grill, or in a grill an on the stove top
  5. While the peppers are cooking: Chop the Tomatoes
  6. Chiffonade (or chop) the Basil
  7. When the peppers are grilled, combine with tomatoes in a bowl
  8. Top with Feta Cheese Basil
  9. Toss the Salad
3.3.3077

 

Do you ever use grilled vegetables in salad?

What are some of your favorite fresh salad side dishes?

 

 

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Arugula Salad with Tomato and Pignolias

Arugula Salad

with Tomato and Pignolias

 

This salad is so simple yet super delicious and healthy for you. It can be ready to eat in ten minutes or less. How great is that?

Here’s how you do it…

You’ll need Wild Arugula, Grape Tomatoes, a regular garden-sized Tomato, and raw Pignolias (Pine Nuts). I used a Lemon Boy tomato from our yard, which added a nice yellow color to the salad. If you can’t find Grape Tomatoes, any type of mini tomato will work just fine.

 

Toast the Pignolias in a skillet with Olive Oil, Coarse Sea Salt, and freshly ground Pepper. Cut the Grape tomatoes in half diagonally, and chop the garden tomato. Place the Arugula in a bowl, then the tomatoes, top with the toasted pignolias, and toss.

 

We served this as a side salad with burgers, hot off the grill, and one of our favorite grilled side dishes, Sour Cream, Cilantro, Parsley Potatoes.

 

 

 

Here’s a Printable recipe, just for you…

5 from 1 reviews
Arugula Salad With Tomato & Pignolias
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Wild Arugula Salad with Grape Tomatoes, Lemon Boy Tomatoes, and toasted Pignolias (Pine Nuts)
from:
Type: salad
Ingredients:
  • I Bag - Wild Arugula
  • Grape Tomatoes (or any mini tomato)
  • Lemon Boy Tomatoes (or any other type of garden tomato)
  • Raw Pignolias (Pine Nuts)
  • Olive Oil
  • Coarse Sea Salt
  • Fresh Ground Pepper
Directions:
  1. Put a skillet on to get hot with a little Olive Oil
  2. Toast Pignolias with Salt and Pepper to taste
  3. Wash Arugula
  4. Slice Grape Tomatoes in half diagonally
  5. Chopped Lemon Boy Tomato
  6. Place cleaned Arugula in a Bowl
  7. Put in both types of Tomatoes
  8. Top with Toasted Pignolias
  9. Toss
3.3.3077

 

You’ve all heard your mother say to Eat Your Greens, but this Arugula Salad makes it a very tasty proposition! I hope you will enjoy.

Do you have any tasty Arugula recipes?

What kind of easy healthy sides do you like to serve with BBQ?

 

Leave me a comment… I’d love to hear from you!

~Lorelai

 

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Grilled Salmon Kabobs & Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad With Tomatoes

A Scrumptious Summer Supper

I wanted to share with you the lovely summer meal that Luke and I had Wednesday night. We grilled up Salmon Kabobs and made an amazing Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad with Tomatoes. It was delicious, filling, and super healthy! I hope you will enjoy it as much as we did.

Grilled Salmon Kabobs
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbs. – Fresh Oregano, chopped
  • 2 Tbs. – Sesame Seeds
  • 1 tsp. – Cumin, ground
  • 1/4 tsp. – Red Pepper Flakes, crushed
  • 1-1/2 Lbs. – Wild Salmon Fillet, skinned and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 – Lemons, very thinly sliced into rounds
  • Olive Oil cooking spray
  • Coarse Sea Salt, to taste
  • 16 – Bamboo Skewers, soaked in water for 1 hour.

Directions
  • Heat the Grill on Medium Heat, and rub Oil on the grates. Combine Oregano, Sesame Seeds, Cumin, and Red Pepper Flakes in a small bowl, mix well, and set aside.
  • Use 2 parallel skewers and thread Salmon and folded Lemon Slices beginning and ending with salmon. You should yield 7 or 8 completed skewers.
  • Lightly coat the salmon with the Olive Oil Spray, then season with Salt and the reserved spice mixture.
  • Grill the Salmon Kabobs, turning occasionally, until fish is opaque throughout, about 8-10 minutes.

Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad with Tomatoes Printable Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1-Box – Israeli Couscous (whole wheat pearl couscous)
  • 1-Bundle – Thin Asparagus Spears (reserve water from boiling)
  • 1-1/2  Cups – Tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 Cup – Red Onion, finely chopped
  • 1-1/2 – Lemons, juiced
  • 1 Tbs. – Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbs. – Fresh Italian Parsley, chopped
  • Coarse Sea Salt, to taste
  • Fresh Cracked Pepper, to taste
  • Slivered Almonds, optional
Salad Prep

Directions

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  • Rinse Asparagus. Snap bottoms off to remove tough ends (If you bend the asparagus they will snap in the appropriate place).
  • Place asparagus into the boiling water and cook for 3 minutes. Remove with a large slotted spoon and rinse in a colander with cold water to stop cooking.
  • Turn off burner and replace lid to the asparagus water. Reserve for later.
  • Cut asparagus into 1/2 inch pieces.
  • Chop Tomatoes (I used our homegrown regular sized tomatoes, but you could use grape or pearl tomatoes), Red Onion, and Italian Parsley.
  • Place all chopped vegetables and herbs into a large bowl.
Couscous

Directions

  • Bring Asparagus Water back to a boil.
  • In a skillet, add the Olive Oil and the Couscous (my box had about 1-1/2 Cups of couscous). Toast the couscous until lightly golden.
  • Follow the directions on your couscous box for how much Boiling Water to use. the asparagus water will add extra flavor.
  • Bring couscous to a boil.
  • Reduce heat to a simmer, and cover couscous.
  • Simmer for about 10-12 minutes or until couscous has soaked up all of the water. If it sticks to the pan a little, you can add a tiny bit more of the asparagus water to loosen the couscous from the pan.
  • Add the couscous to the other salad ingredients in the bowl, Salt and Pepper to taste.

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve the Salmon Kabobs hot off the grill.
  • The Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad with Tomatoes can be served directly after making, at room temperature, or chilled.
  • We rounded out the meal with fresh sliced Avocado.
  • Leftover salmon can be added to the couscous salad for a delicious lunch the next day. Warm the salmon or use it cold.

Please let me know how much you enjoy this
Scrumptious Summer Supper!

Do you have any Summer Favorites?

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~Lorelai

 

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