My friend Julie Sullivan is a saint. A saint, I tell you.
The other day, she posted this picture of her dinner…this amazing pasta-ish casserole, with the caption “Mac & Cheese Broccoli Bake.” Well, I was intrigued. I was drooling. Why? Because it looked absolutely fantastic, that’s why.
And…I did what any good hungry girl would do. I asked for the recipe.
She was kind enough to pass it on…as I wasn’t the only one begging for it. And she even mentioned how I could make it gluten-free. And, amazingly enough, I had everything I needed in my pantry and fridge. Gotta love that. So…after polishing off my Vegan Gumbo last night, I was set to cook up another fantastic meal to get me and my roommate through another couple of days.
Thanks to Julie…I did just that.
Recipe: Gluten-Free Mac & Cheese Broccoli Bake
Time: Prep 30 minutes; Bake 20 minutes
- 12oz uncooked twisted pasta (I used Bi-Aglut Fusilli)
- 2 1/2 c. uncooked broccoli
- 1 tsp salted butter (I used Smart Balance)
- 1/3 c. fresh bread crumbs (I used Katz Gluten-Free Bread Crumbs…because they ROCK!)
- 3 Tbsp. plus 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese, divided
- 2 1/2 c. skim milk (I substituted unsweetened almond milk)
- 1/3 c. all purpose flour (I used Hodgson Mills Gluten-Free Multi Purpose Flour)
- 1/2 c. onion, diced
- 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 tsp. Dijon Mustard
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat a shallow 2 quart baking dish with cooking spray (I used butter to grease it).
Cook pasta, adding broccoli to water for the last 3 minutes of cooking time. Drain and return to pot.
In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat, add bread crumbs and cook until light golden brown. Remove from heat and transfer to a small bowl, stir in 3 Tbsp of Parmesan cheese and set aside.
In same saucepan (can wipe clean easily) whisk together milk and flour, add onion. Bring to a boil over med-high heat, whisking often. Reduce heat to low and simmer until thickened, about 2 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in cheese, mustard, salt and pepper.
Pour pasta and broccoli into baking dish, cover with cheese mixture, stirring to coat evenly. Top with breadcrumbs.
Bake until edges are bubbly, about 20-25 minutes.
Yes…it really is that easy. And even more…it really is that tasty. I was in love with the flavor and taste of this. Those breadcrumbs add an amazing texture and flavor to the entire dish. And while I didn’t get to use the cheese I had wanted and intended to use on this, the back-up plan worked out better than imagined (I like bold flavors and I had no extra sharp cheese to supplement when I found my original cheese plan had…gone bad). This was easy to throw together and allow to bake. The apartment smelled awesome.
And when my roomie and I sat down to taste…we devoured it. Honestly. It’s a good thing I pre-portion these meals out because I think we could have eaten the entire pan on our own…in one sitting. That is how much we raved about it.
So…again…thank you, Julie!
And now…to the rest of you…I encourage you to get cooking. This one is totally worth it.