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Mac and Cheese with Butternut Squash and Ham

Here, butternut squash adds some subtle sweetness as a counterpoint to the sharp tang of cheddar and gruyere in this dish. Prepare to see your dinner guests’ jaws drop when you tell them the secret ingredient.

Ready in: Level: Easy
Prep: Cook: Yields: 10 Servings


  • 1 small butternut squash (about 1 1/4 pounds, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes, about 3 1/2 cups )

  • 1 1/4 c low sodium chicken broth

  • 1 lb penne pasta

  • 3 T unsalted butter

  • 4 T flour

  • 1 1/4 c Stonyfield Organic 2% Milk (warmed)

  • 4 oz shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese (about 1 1/2 cups)

  • 3 oz shredded Gruyere cheese (about 1 cup)

  • 3/4 c Stonyfield Organic Whole Milk Plain Yogurt

  • 3/4 t salt

  • 1/2 t black pepper

  • 1 t nutmeg

  • 1/8 t cayenne pepper

  • 1 slice ham (about 6 ounces, 1/2-inch-thick cut into 1/4-inch pieces)

  • 2 T bread crumbs

  • 1 T grated Parmesan cheese

Serving Size: 226g, Calories: 380, Calories from Fat: 130, Total Fat: 14g, Total Fat Percent: 22%, Saturated Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat Percent: 40%, Cholesterol: 45mg, Cholesterol Percent: 15%, Sodium: 500mg, Sodium Percent: 21%, Total Carbohydrate: 45g, Total Carbohydrate Percent: 15%, Dietary Fiber: 3g, Dietary Fiber Percent: 12%, Sugars: 5g, Protein: 18g, Protein Percent: 36%, Vitamin A: 130%, Vitamin C: 15%, Calcium: 25%, Iron: 8%


Step 1

Heat oven to 375°. Combine squash and broth in a medium-size saucepan; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium; simmer until squash is tender when pierced with a fork, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and mash contents of saucepan; set aside.

Step 2

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add penne and cook for about 11 minutes or until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta water, and transfer to a large bowl; set aside.

Step 3

Melt butter in a medium-size saucepan over medium-high heat. Whisk in flour and cook for 1 minute or until pale yellow, whisking constantly. Gradually add milk to saucepan, whisking constantly until sauce thickens. Reduce heat to low and stir in cheeses; continue stirring until cheese is completely melted. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 8 minutes. Stir in squash mixture, yogurt, salt, pepper, nutmeg, cayenne and ham.

Step 4

In a large bowl, stir together pasta and cheese sauce, adding reserved pasta water by the 1/4-cupful if needed to loosen sauce.

Step 5

Lightly coat a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer pasta mixture to dish. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and Parmesan and spritz topping with nonstick cooking spray.

Step 6

Cover with foil and bake at 375° for 20 minutes. Remove foil, and continue baking for about 35 minutes or until lightly browned on top. Serve immediately.