Superhero Mac and Cheese with Banza Chickpea Pasta

Superhero Mac and Cheese

While at the Fancy Food Show in NYC, I came across a booth for Banza, a high protein and gluten free pasta made from chickpeas. I love pasta, I love chickpeas, and I love free samples of food, so I have to admit I stopped by their booth a couple times. The pasta sample was SO good. So good, in fact, that I’ve kept in contact with the folks over at Banza, and agreed to work with them on creating an awesome recipe showcasing their pasta. I’ve been testing it in all of my normal pasta dishes, and it works so well that Mr. Geek now requests it over normal pasta for dinner. But I didn’t want something normal. I wanted to make something EPIC. I turned one of my fave Mac and Cheese recipes into a slightly spicy, protein-packed, gluten-free dish made for a superhero. And I topped it with sprinkles because no one was there to stop me. Guess what? It was delicious. (And the sprinkles added a slightly sweet crunch which complemented the spicy mac and cheese really well!)

So give this dish a try when you want to make something warm, gooey, and comforting, that won’t leave you feeling like you just ate your weight in carbs. Pair it with a big, fresh garden salad and you’ve got yourself a balanced meal!

PLUS, get $10 off your order at eatbanza.com when you use code “GEEKYHOSTESS”!

Superhero Mac and Cheese

Ingredients:

SAUCE

  • 2 tbs unsalted butter
  • 3 1/2 tbs gluten-free flour
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 7 ounces white cheddar cheese, grated (about 1 3/4 cups)
  • 1 ounce pepperjack cheese, grated (1/4 cup)
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper

PASTA

  • One box Banza elbow macaroni (8 oz)
  • 1 ounce (1/4 cup) white cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 ounce (1/4 cup) pepperjack cheese, grated
  • ½ tsp chipotle chili powder
  • 1/8 cups gluten-free breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbs lightning bolt sprinkles

Directions:

  1. To first make the sauce, melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Once the butter has melted, whisk in the flour and continue to whisk and cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly.
  4. Let sauce cook until it thickens, about 10 minutes, while stirring frequently.
  5. Remove pan from heat and add the cheeses and seasonings listed in the “SAUCE” section. Stir until everything is fully melted. Set aside.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  7. Cook the macaroni according to the package, but remove 1 minute before the lowest cook time on the packaged directions. (It will continue cooking in the oven!) Rinse the pasta in cold water and let it drain.
  8. Oil an 8-inch casserole dish and set aside.
  9. Combine the cooked pasta with the sauce, and mix until well coated. Pour the mac and cheese mixture into the casserole dish.
  10. Cover the mac and cheese with the additional grated cheese, then the chili powder, then the gluten-free bread crumbs, and finally with the sprinkles.
  11. Bake for 20 minutes or until bubbling and amazing looking. Enjoy!

(Don’t need gluten-free options? Feel free to use regular flour and bread crumbs!)

What’s your fave mac and cheese recipe? Would you be willing to try sprinkles on your dish? And have you tried Banza?

 

One Comment

  1. This may be the best mac & cheese I’ve ever had! The sauce was thick and creamy but had a great spice kick to it. Since the pasta is made from chickpeas and protein-packed, I felt slightly less guilty getting a second helping. And the sprinkles added an extra crunch and a tiny bit of sweetness that helped balance the rich and spicy sauce.
    I was super excited to find out that my local grocery store carries the Banza pasta! I made a couple changes due to availability and preferences on cheese: I used 3 pepper Colby Jack, Vermont sharp white cheddar, Banza shells, and panko breadcrumbs instead of pepper jack, regular white cheddar, elbows, and regular breadcrumbs, respectively.
    Try this recipe! You won’t be sorry!

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