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Fresh Herb Mac and Cheese

This baked mac and cheese is filled with broccoli and chicken sausage, and has a fresh herb topping. Perfect for kids and adults.
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: mac and cheese
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 500kcal

Ingredients

Mac and Cheese

  • 16 ounces small shells
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 sweet onion chopped
  • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • 8 ounces mixed cheddar cheeses
  • 1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • 6 ounces 2 links sweet Italian chicken sausage, I use al fresco brand
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 small head of broccoli about 1.5 cups

Topping

  • 1/2 cup plain panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • 2 teaspoon fresh sage chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary chopped

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9x13 or 3.5 quart baking dish.
  • Cook pasta shells per package instructions until al dente. Set aside.
  • Steam broccoli and chop crowns into bite size pieces. Set aside. To do this quickly, I put a few tablespoons of a water in a microwave safe bowl, place the broccoli in the water, and then cover the bowl with a microwave safe plate. I heat it on high for about 2 minutes, then drain the broccoli.
  • Remove sausage from casings and crumble. Heat olive oil in small pan over medium heat. Add crumbled chicken sausage and cook until slightly browned. Remove and set aside.
  • In a large sauce pan over medium heat, melt 4 tbsp butter and add onion, seasoning salt, pepper, nutmeg and chili powder, stir together well.
  • Sprinkle flour over ingredients and saute for 1-2 minutes.
  • Whisk milk into mixture and bring to a boil. Turn down to low and allow to simmer for 5 minutes, until slightly thickened, whisking frequently.
  • Stir in cheese and worcestershire sauce. Once well combined, stir in pasta, chicken and broccoli.
  • Place mixture in prepared baking dish.
  • Melt 2 tbsp butter and mix well with panko, sage, thyme and rosemary. Spread evenly over mac and cheese.
  • Bake for 30 minutes.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/12th recipe | Calories: 500kcal | Carbohydrates: 80.6g | Protein: 23.5g | Fat: 19.9g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 558mg | Potassium: 332mg | Fiber: 3.9g | Calcium: 2920mg | Iron: 0.7mg