A pan and serving dish both filled with 3-veg mac 'n' cheese

3-veg mac 'n' cheese

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(34 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 40 mins


Serves 2 adults + 2 children

Sneak vegetables into macaroni cheese, a popular family meal that becomes even more nourishing for kids with the addition of butternut squash, leeks and peas

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: Per serving (4 average portions)

  • kcal680
  • fat31g
  • saturates19g
  • carbs69g
  • sugars12g
  • fibre7g
  • protein29g
  • salt1.25g
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  • 150g butternut squash, cut into chunks
  • 300g penne (we used Napolina 50% white 50% wholemeal)
  • 40g butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 1 small leek, finely sliced (about 50g)



    Like garlic and onion, leeks are a member of the allium family, but have their own distinct…

  • 25g flour



    Flour is a powdery ingredient usually made from grinding wheat, maize, rye, barley or rice. As…

  • 600ml milk



    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • 100g frozen peas



    A type of legume, peas grow inside long, plump pods. As is the case with all types of legume,…

  • 175g mature Cheddar cheese (we used a vegetarian version)
  • 1 slice day-old brown bread, blitzed into crumbs


  1. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Put the butternut squash in a steamer over boiling water. Steam for around 15-20 mins or until tender. Drain and then blitz in a food processor until smooth.

  2. Cook the pasta according to the pack instructions.

  3. Heat the butter in a medium saucepan, add the leek and cook for 2 mins. Stir in the flour and cook for 1-2 mins more. Take the pan off the heat and gradually whisk in the milk. Return to the heat and bring to the boil, stirring all the time. Simmer for 5 mins. Stir in the peas and bring back to a simmer. Take the pan off the heat and stir in the butternut squash, then 125g cheese.

  4. Stir the pasta into the sauce and transfer to an ovenproof dish. Sprinkle over the remaining cheese and the breadcrumbs. Bake for 20 mins or until golden and bubbling.

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Comments, questions and tips

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26th May, 2019
nourishing for children?
27th Jun, 2019
What point are you trying to make?
18th Nov, 2018
This was fantastic, the best I've ever made. It was gobbled up by everyone.
1st Feb, 2018
Would definitely recommend this, it’s a hit in my household everyone loves it and you can make it your own by adding different veg. We usually use ham, peas, broccoli and leeks and add bacon on top of the cheese
16th Sep, 2019
Can you make this recipe in advance of baking it (I.e. 8 hours before)?
15th Mar, 2018
Hi - Can you freeze this recipe as have heard you can freeze MnC before you get to the baking point at the end? Thanks
goodfoodteam's picture
19th Mar, 2018
Thanks for your question. Yes, you could freeze before baking.
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