BLT-rific Mac 'n Cheese
- 3 slices turkey bacon or center-cut bacon
- 4 1/2 ounces (about 1 1/2 cups) dry uncooked whole-wheat or high-fiber penne pasta
- 2 large yellow summer squash
- 3 cups chopped fresh spinach
- 1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
- 4 wedges light spreadable Swiss cheese (recommended: The Laughing Cow Light)
- 2 tablespoons fat-free sour cream
- 2 slices fat-free Cheddar cheese
- Salt and black pepper, optional
Bring a skillet sprayed with nonstick spray to medium heat on the stove. Add bacon and cook until crispy, about 4 minutes per side. Once cool enough to handle, crumble or chop and set aside.
In a large pot, prepare pasta al dente (firm) according to the instructions on the package. Drain well, return to the pot, and cover to keep warm.
While water comes to a boil and while pasta cooks, cut squash into pieces similar to the size of penne, about 2 inches long and 1/2 inch thick.
Spray a large skillet (with a lid) with nonstick spray, and bring to medium heat on the stove. Add squash, cover, and cook for 5 minutes, occasionally uncovering to stir.
Add spinach and tomato to the skillet, re-cover, and continue to cook for about 1 minute. Remove cover and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until spinach has wilted, tomatoes are soft, and excess liquid has cooked off, about 3 minutes. If needed, drain any excess liquid. Set aside.
Place cheese wedges in a microwave-safe bowl and stir to break them up. Add sour cream and cheese slices, breaking cheese slices into pieces as you add them. Microwave for 30 seconds, and then stir thoroughly. Microwave for another 30 seconds, or until cheeses have fully melted. Mix until smooth.
Add cheese mixture and cooked veggies to the pasta. Toss to coat. Top with bacon. If needed, bring to desired temperature on the stove. If you like, season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve it up!
PER SERVING (1/4 recipe, about 1 cup): 227 calories, 5g fat, 491mg sodium, 33g carbs, 6g fiber, 4g sugars, 13g protein