Quinoa and Spinach Un-Mac n’ Cheese

This recipe takes my favorite mac and cheese to a whole new level. Instead of pasta, it uses quinoa which adds protein and cuts back on the carbs. Adding the spinach adds a little vegetable to the dish making it that much more healthy! This recipe has been added to my list of favorite comfort foods!

Quinoa and Spinach Un-Mac n’ Cheese

quinoa and spinach unmac n cheese

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Quinoa
  • 3 tablespoons Butter
  • 3 tablespoons Flour
  • 1 1/2 cups Milk
  • Freshly Grated Nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Shallot (minced)
  • 8 ounces Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese (divided)
  • 1 bag Fresh Baby Spinach
  • 4 tablespoons Butter (melted)
  • 3/4 cup Panko Breadcrumbs

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare a casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.

Cook the quinoa according to the package instructions.

In a sauce pan over medium heat, add 3 tablespoons of butter and the shallot. Cook until the shallot is slightly soft then whisk in flour. Continue to whisk until a paste forms and becomes light golden in color.

Whisk in the milk and increase the heat to medium-high. Bring to a boil while whisking. Stir in nutmeg and salt along with the cheddar cheese. When the cheese sauce is smooth, remove from heat.

In a large bowl, mix cooked quinoa, cheese sauce, spinach and half of the parmesan cheese. Transfer mixture to the casserole dish. Top with the remaining parmesan.

In a small bowl, stir together the melted butter and panko breadcrumbs. Sprinkle over the casserole and bake for 20 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly before serving.

Recipe source: http://abc.go.com/shows/the-chew/recipes/quinoa-spinach-un-mac-n-cheese-dana-urbinati

Popcorn Treats

By far the best way to get rid of your left over Halloween candy! With only 2 main ingredients, you can add any candy toppings you like. These no-bake marshmallow popcorn treats will be a hit at any party!

Popcorn Treats

popcorn treats

Ingredients
Vegetable cooking spray
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
6 cups (12-ounces) mini marshmallows
Reese’s Pieces
Mini Chocolate Chips
Heath Bars
Orange Sprinkles

Directions
Spray the inside of a large mixing bowl with vegetable cooking spray, and lightly spray a baking sheet. Set aside.

Pop popcorn in the microwave, about 2 bags worth.

In a medium saucepan, heat the butter over low heat. Add the vanilla extract and marshmallows. Stir constantly until the marshmallows have melted and the mixture is smooth, about 5 minutes. Pour the melted marshmallow mixture over the popcorn. Using a spatula, sprayed with cooking spray, stir until the popcorn is coated. Spread the mixture over the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle with the reese’s pieces, mini chocolate chips, heath bar bits and sprinkles. Using a spatula, gently press the toppings into the popcorn. Allow the mixture to dry for 1 hour.

Roll into balls of various sizes and store airtight in a plastic container.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/halloween-popcorn-treats-recipe.html