Baked Mac and Cheese Cupcakes.

No, not those kind of cupcakes.

Cute, little savory cupcake-formed stacks of mac and cheese.

Healthy ones, too – made with whole wheat bread crumbs and whole wheat pasta.

Are you sold yet?

I figured this would be a good way to sneak in some veggies. Since I obviously have to cook for myself the way a mother needs to cook for a 3-year old.

When I look for vegetable recipes, I often turn to the masters of the kitchen – Giada in this case.

I also have my share of vegetarian and vegan cookbooks. No, I will never give up bacon and cheese, but I figure if anyone knows how to make vegetables taste good, it has to be vegetarians.

But I’m still stuck on the theory that vegetables taste like mud when I make them and like diamond-crusted, chocolate-stuffed bacon when someone else makes them for me. In other words, can you come over and cook some veggies for me?

 

 

Let me just say that I loved the cherry tomatoes in here. They were the best part – adding a bit of sweetness to the cheesy pasta.

Another thing I love is how versatile this dish is. Different cheeses, different pastas, different veggies (or not…) can all be substituted to personalize the cupcakes.

 

 

Baked Mac and Cheese Cupcakes

from Giada

Makes about 12 cupcakes

1 1/2 cups whole wheat pasta

1/2 cup shredded smoked cheddar cheese

1/2 cup shredded provolone cheese

1/4 cup parmesan cheese

1 pint grape tomatoes, quartered

1/4 zucchini, chopped

1-2 cups whole wheat bread crumbs

3 tablespoons olive oil

salt & pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400.

Boil pasta as the box states. Set aside in a large bowl. Chop tomatoes and zucchini, and season with salt and pepper.

Spray cupcake tins with non-stick spray, and coat with breadcrumbs, shaking any excess off.

In pasta bowl, add provolone and cheddar and combine. Add 2-3 tablespoons pasta mixture to each muffin tin. Place tomatoes and zucchini throughout pasta in each muffin top. Top with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of parmesan and breadcrumbs.

Bake for 12-15 minutes. Let cool completely, then gently remove with a spoon.

 

 

 

 

These would be a great weekend treat.

And you can eat a lot of them too, because you know, weekend calories don’t count.