Thursday, July 12, 2012

Cheesy Macaroni Salad

I'm not a big fan of "salads" that don't actually involve lettuce. I've never found an egg salad that I like. I will try a bite or two of potato salad on occasion. I never even wanted to try macaroni salad. (However, I love pasta salad, but they are two totally separate things.) Have you seen that stuff in the grocery store deli cases? Sometimes it's pink. Sometimes it's neon yellow. Sometimes it's unnaturally white. No matter what, it's always unappealingly moist and contains unidentifiable chunks of... something. Nothing about it ever seemed appetizing to me, and I was content in my macaroni salad-free life. Then I found this recipe.

If you know me, you know that I have a weakness for cheese. If you slather some sort of cheese on it, I'll eat it. That goes for pretty much anything (although I have to admit that I am not one of those cheese-on-apples people), so of course I would stumble across a cheesy macaroni salad and instantly throw away my lifelong macaroni salad aversion to try it. I was not disappointed. If you're a macaroni salad traditionalist, you might not dig this version, but I love it. I still don't want to eat grocery store macaroni salad, and I don't know if I'm even up for trying a more traditional version made at home, but I will eat this any chance I get.

The recipe starts with boxed macaroni and cheese. I suppose you could make it with the kind that has the packet of powder that you use to make the cheese sauce(my favorite food from my childhood), but I always use the kind that comes with the packet of liquid cheese sauce. Sometimes we add chunks of chicken breast to make it into more of a meal. As with any macaroni salad, you can serve it either hot or cold, but I find that I like it better hot.


2 pkg macaroni and cheese
1 c low-fat mayonnaise
1/2 c milk
1/2 onion, diced
1 red or green bell pepper, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 hard-boiled eggs, peeled
1/4 tsp black pepper
Pinch of paprika


Boil pasta from macaroni and cheese packages. Drain, and set aside. Meanwhile, cut eggs in half and remove yolks. In a large bowl, crush yolks with a fork or whisk. Add mayonnaise, milk, and cheese sauce packets, and mix well. Cut egg whites into crescents, and add to cheese mixture. Add pasta and remaining ingredients, and mix until well coated.

Servings: 6

Recipe adapted from Kraft.

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