Protein Mac 'n' Cheese

Protein Mac 'n' Cheese
I have been training for a triathlon race for 5 months and I forgot to sign up. My triathlon season opener is this weekend and it kind of snuck up on me. And when I say ‘kind of’ I mean I signed up for the Sunday race on Thursday. This came after an especially intense gym session on Wednesday where I decided to show everyone in the gym what these noodle arms can lift. Hint: not much. I’m 3 days out from the race and the only thing I can focus on at this point is recovery. I am currently in the I-can’t-lift-my-arms-to-wash-my-hair phase of soreness, so you could say things are going well. As with most situations, I’m turning to food for help. With a need for both a small carb boost and muscle-healing protein, I created a protein-packed pasta dish. I discovered chickpea pasta while helping some gluten-free friends find alternative grains and I was incredibly impressed by the nutrient content and the taste of the noodles. This spin on traditional macaroni and cheese is a powerhouse side dish or could be used a meatless entree boasting 28 g of protein per cup.

Protein Packed Mac n’ Cheese

Yield: 8, ½ cup servings Ingredients
  • 2 cups Banza elbow pasta
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 cup broccoli florets, steamed
  • Salt & pepper
  1. Cook the macaroni until al dente in salted water. Drain the pasta and set aside.
  2. In a small sauce pot (or same pot used for macaroni) add milk, cheese, garlic powder, paprika, and red pepper flakes and cook on low until cheese is melted. Whisk continuously.
  3. Once the cheese is melted, add Greek yogurt and continue to whisk until smooth and creamy.
  4. Stir in cooked noodles and steamed broccoli into the pot and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Nutrition Facts (per ½ cup serving)
  • 190 calories
  • 18 g carbohydrates
  • 9 g fat
  • 14 g protein
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