It's been awhile since I posted a baby food recipe. Now, my baby is a 14 month old toddler. She walks, babbles a few words, and gets into everything. The older kids cry out every time she takes something of theirs. I calmly remind them that I have been warning them of this day for an entire year now.
She's got a fiesty streak in her, and doesn't back down to her older brother for anything. She's also happy and pleasantly stubborn. (As I'm finding out now as I wean her from the bottle). She is so loved and adored by everyone, and she is never without getting attention for long by one of the family members.
Her favorite thing to do is make a mess. If she doesn't like her food, she'll spit it out wherever she is standing. Toys are hidden in -literally- every edge and corner of our home. I find that mealtime is more of an exploration rather than an "all you can eat" buffet like it was when she was an infant. She now wants to play and investigate her food.
I came across this baked macaroni and cheese recipe for baby on the Whole Foods Market website and was intrigued. Squash is added for extra veggies and taste, and the muffins are easy to make. The babies and preschoolers who tried it LOVED it, but it seemed to not be as popular with the older kids.
Try some macaroni and cheese muffins today with your little one! They will love dissecting them almost as much as eating them!
Macaroni and Cheese Muffins
Adapted from Whole Foods Market
2 cups macaroni noodles (whole wheat or gluten free noodles are fine to use)
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp flour
⅔ cup milk
1 ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
3 ounces mozzarella cheese
½ tsp Dijon mustard
½ tsp salt
1 cup acorn or butternut squash puree
1 large egg, beaten
2 tbsp finely grated parmsean cheese
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Cook pasta according to package directions until pasta just barely become tender. (Typically one minute less than the package direction cooking time). Drain, then set aside for later use.
In a saucepan, melt the butter. Turn the heat up to medium and add the milk and flour, stirring the mixture until it begins to simmer and thicken. Turn the heat down to medium low and stir in the cheeses, mustard and salt. Stir until the cheese melts. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the squash puree, then the egg. Once ingredients are mixed well, add in the macaroni and continue to mix until the macaroni is coated in cheese mixture.
Pour macaroni into muffin liners that have been placed inside muffin pan. Fill each muffin liner to the top, then sprinkle with a small amount of parmesean cheese. Continue to fill muffins and sprinkle cheese until completed.
Bake at 375 degrees, uncovered for approximately 25 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned. Remove muffins from oven and allow them to cool in the muffin pan for ten minutes before moving to a cooling rack.
Muffins can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. freezing is not recommended.
Makes 12 muffins.