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Tuscan Mac & Cheese

We love Mac & Cheese but also recognize the importance of vegetable and protein intake! This recipe is the best of both worlds!


  • 8 oz. dried macaroni (about two cups)

  • 1 Tbsp butter

  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic

  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour

  • 2 cups (1 pint) half-and-half or heavy cream

  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning

  • 1/2 - 1 cup shredded or grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1 lb. Italian sausage, browned and drained or 2 cups chopped cooked chicken

  • 1 12-oz. jar roasted red peppers, drained and chopped

  • a large handful of spinach

  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup diced mushrooms

  • Cajun seasoning or red pepper flakes to sprinkle on top (optional)


  1. Cook macaroni as the box directs (see notes for Instant Pot directions). Drain and set aside.

  2. Add the butter to a large skillet on medium heat. Once the butter is melted, whisk in the garlic and flour.

  3. Slowly whisk in the half-and-half. Stir in the salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and cheese. Stir until the cheese is fully melted.

  4. Add in the macaroni, meat, chopped peppers, spinach, and diced mushrooms.

  5. Stir and cook until the spinach has wilted. Sprinkle with Cajun seasoning and more cheese, if desired.


  • Macaroni Instant Pot: It may be dependent on the brand, but for Barilla and Great Value I do 2 cups dried pasta with 2 cups water. Pressure cook for 3 minutes with a quick release.

  • The Cajun seasoning is very good! We like Slap ya Mama, Punch Daddy, or this homemade seasoning.

Recipe adapted from

Love this recipe? Let me know by leaving a comment or messaging me on Instagram! I'd love to hear what you think.

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Sep 03, 2022

I've made it multiple times now, and it's great! I use frozen spinach instead of fresh, and it works out great. We also use Tony's Cajun seasoning


Ben Richardson
Ben Richardson
Feb 26, 2022

This looks absolutely divine! Can't wait to try it!

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