Lesser Evil Mac & Cheese

Who doesn’t love Mac & Cheese? Seriously, we love it so much, we made our White Cheddar Krinkle Sticks in honor of it. As one of our die-hard fans pointed out, our White Cheddar Krinkle Sticks taste just like Mac & Cheese, but you have to eat a minimum of 5 Sticks. He told us about this phenomenon, so we tested it out. Sure enough, he was totally right! We took it to the next level and tried eating 5 Sticks at a time…That works too. We were inspired by The 5 Krinkle Stick Mac & Cheese idea, so we asked our favorite Guest Blogger, Amelia Winslow, from Eating Made Easy for a Less Evil version of the American Classic*.

*Note: If you are uncomfortable with Not using boxed mac & cheese, now would be a good time to avert your eyes :)

The recipe below is everything you expect from your favorite macaroni dish – creamy, smooth, and cheesy – but it also happens to be Less Evil, thanks to the addition of pureed squash (shhh!) and the evaporated skim milk. Your family members will never know what you snuck into (and left out of) this dish, so you’ll have a table full of happy customers but can rest assured you provided a healthy meal. Enjoy!

Lesser Evil Mac and Cheese


The Secret Ingredient (Shh Don't Tell Anyone)

12 ounces Elbow Macaroni
1 Yellow or Brown Onion, finely chopped
8 ounces White Mushrooms, sliced
2 tablespoons Butter
1 pinch Ground Nutmeg
1 ½ cups Butternut Squash, pureed

Finished Product and way Less Evil

14 ounces Evaporated Skim Milk, 1 can
2 tablespoons All Purpose Flour
1 ½ cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
¼ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese


  1. Prepare noodles according to package directions, making sure to liberally salt the pasta water. Leave pasta in the strainer and return pot to the stove.
  2. In the pasta pot, saute onion and mushrooms in the butter (with generous pinch of salt & small pinch of pepper) over medium heat until onions soften (5-8 min), stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the flour to the pot and stir mixture for about a minute, then add full can of evaporated milk and whisk for ~3 minutes or until mixture has thickened a bit. Add squash puree to pot and whisk to combine, then add cheeses and pinch of nutmeg and continue mix until sauce is smooth.
  4. Return the noodles to the pot and gently fold into the sauce with a spatula or wooden spoon. Serve with some more sprinkles of Parmesan cheese, alongside a green salad or any vegetable side dish.

Note: you can use fresh cooked squash that you puree, buy pureed frozen squash in the freezer section, or use canned pumpkin in place of the squash. Each option yields a great result.

Amelia Winslow, MS, MPH

© LesserEvil 2018