Sin and Spin(ach): Spinach and Artichoke Mac ‘N Cheese

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Do you love spinach and artichoke dip more than one of more of your parents? Does the search for the ideal macaroni and cheese haunt your dreams and nightmares with kind of awkward regularity? If you answered yes to either of these questions, read on. And maybe make a psych appointment. But mostly read on.

I did two awesome things last week that I recommend everyone else try.

1. I watched Star Trek IV, in which Cap’n Kirk & Co go back in time…to save the Humpback Whale. Just…watch it.

2. I invented this recipe for Spinach and Artichoke Mac ‘N Cheese and it is preeeettty delicious. Plus it contains vegetables so it’s almost healthy. Almost.

Spinach and Artichoke Macaroni and Cheese

I hadn’t had spinach and artichoke dip in a while and I was thinking about how good it is. Then I thought about how good it might be if you stirred it into some macaroni and baked it til hot and bubbly. So I did! 

Ingredients:

1 package of chopped frozen spinach (10oz.)
1 package of frozen artichoke hearts (8-10oz. depending on the brand)
1 8 oz. package of cream cheese
1 8 oz. container of sour cream
2 cups shredded cheese (your choice! I used cheddar but mozzarella or a 3-cheese mix would probably be good, too)
1lb elbow macaroni
1 tbsp garlic salt
1.5 tbsp salt
Pepper to taste

Make it Happen!

1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Get your spinach and artichokes into a pot with about a cup of water. Bring to a boil. After boiling, reduce heat and let simmer for 5-6 minutes until everything is tender. Don’t overcook your artichokes – they can get mushy. When finished, drain them in a strainer or colander. 

3. While spinach and artichokes are a-cookin’, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook your elbow macaroni.

4. Pop the cream cheese in the microwave for 30 seconds to soften.

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5. Mix spinach and artichokes, softened cream cheese, sour cream, and half of the the cheese together. Stir in seasoning – add more if you like! At this point, you basically have a delicious dip that you can serve with pita chips and enjoy. 

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6. Drain your macaroni. Pour spinach and artichoke dip mixture over the macaroni. Mix unil the macaroni is coated. Transfer mixture to a large oven-safe dish.

7. Sprinkle the rest of your shredded cheese on top – I used cheddar and a little grated parmesan. You could also add some breadcrumbs for texture if desired.

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8. Bake for 20 minutes or until melty. Serve hot and bubbly!

 

This stuff is great fresh out of the oven and makes for about a week’s worth of leftovers. Plus it’s a great way to get kids (…or adults) to eat their veggies!

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