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So I bet you’re probably thinking that having parents who write a food blog would mean that our six-year-old daughter is a little ‘foodie’ herself? And she’s willing to try many of the delicious foods that we make for our blog?
Our six-year-old is a very picky eater, and we can count on two hands the foods she willingly eats. (And it’s not for our lack of trying to get her to try new foods!)
Like most kids, one of Emma’s favorite foods of all-time is macaroni & cheese – and this recipe for our Copycat Kraft Macaroni and Cheese comes very close to recreating both the flavor, as well as the distinctive yellow-orange color of the cheese sauce from the package. (As anyone with a young child knows, sometimes, it’s as much about how the food looks – never mind how it tastes!)
We’ve used a blend of cheeses and seasonings to create this copycat recipe. Also included in the recipe are ideas for adding in some pureed vegetables like sweet potato or cauliflower to the cheese sauce, just to get some vegetables in somehow!
And our toughest critic? What does she think about how this mac & cheese sauce tastes? Her words: “This is VERY GOOD!”
- Pasta of your choice
For the cheese sauce
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1/2 cup WisPride
- 1/2 cup Velveeta
- 8 slices yellow American cheese
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 teaspoon Colman’s dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2–3 drops Tabasco sauce
- Orange food coloring (optional)
- Cook pasta according to package directions.
- To prepare the cheese sauce, place all ingredients into a medium sauce pan and heat until the cheese is melted and the mixture blended. Remove from heat and store in refrigerator for later use or mix one cup of heated cheese sauce to three cups of cooked pasta and serve immediately.
- Note: If you want this to look and taste just like the boxed mix, use all of the salt, butter and use orange food coloring. Otherwise, you can cut back on the salt and butter and omit the food coloring for a healthier version. This will all depend on how finicky your child is.
- Another tip to make this extra healthy is to add cooked pureed sweet potatoes and/or cooked pureed cauliflower with a little milk to thin them down. The taste only changes a bit and you are getting a healthier version of the copycat recipe into your child. We slowly added these vegetables over time to get our daughter used to the taste and now her cheese sauce is 1/3 cheese sauce, 1/3 pureed sweet potato and 1/3 pureed cauliflower. (She knows we add in the vegetables and is fine with it!)
- In our house we keep prepared sauce and cooked pasta in the refrigerator. When someone is hungry for macaroni and cheese, we just heat 3 parts pasta to one part sauce and microwave. In about two minutes, hungry children are eating lunch or dinner.
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