Macaroni and Cheese with Chicken and Broccoli
Chicken, cheese, milk and vegetables have all been shown to contain nutrients that are beneficial for dental health. The calcium in this recipe can protect tooth enamel and help remineralize teeth. A crunchy vegetable, such as broccoli, has high water content and will increase the flow of saliva in the mouth, helping to wash away the food particles that can cause tooth decay. Moreover, this recipe is a healthy play on a classic comfort dish with whole wheat pasta, low-fat cheese and fat-free milk, making it a go-to dish for lunch or dinner!
- 1 pound whole wheat macaroni elbows
- 2 1/2 cups raw broccoli florets, available packaged in produce department
- 1 tablespoon of butter
- 1 tablespoon of flour
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 3 cups fat-free milk
- 1 cup sodium-free, low-fat chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pound chicken breast tenders, chopped
- Salt and pepper
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 3 cups low-fat yellow sharp Cheddar
- 1 tablespoon prepared Dijon mustard
Heat a medium pan over medium to medium-high heat. Add extra-virgin olive oil and chicken and season with salt and pepper. Sauté a couple of minutes then add onion and cook another 5 to 7 minutes until onions are tender and chicken is cooked through. Turn off heat and reserve.
To boiling water, add pasta and salt to season the cooking water. Cook 5 minutes, then add broccoli and cook 3 minutes more or until pasta is cooked to al dente and florets are just tender.
While pasta cooks, heat a medium sauce pot over medium heat. Add butter and melt, then add flour, cayenne and paprika and whisk together over heat until roux bubbles then cook a minute more. Whisk in milk and stock and raise heat to bring the sauce to a quick boil. Simmer until the sauce thickens about 5 minutes.
Drain macaroni or pasta and broccoli florets. Add back to the pot and add chicken to the pasta and broccoli.
Add cheese to milk sauce and stir to melt it in, a minute or so. Stir in mustard and season sauce with salt and pepper. Pour sauce over chicken and broccoli and cooked pasta and stir to combine. Adjust seasonings and transfer to a large serving platter and serve.
10 servings per recipe, 1 serving: 383 calories, 39.4 g of carbohydrates, 4.2 g of Fiber, 13.8 g of fat, 25.5 g of protein
For more information:
Go to the Diet and Nutrition health topic.