I lovvvve finding ways to make scrumptious, comfort food a little bit healthier. Because, let's be serious, one of the reasons comfort food tastes so darn amazing is because there are lots of not so good ingredients in them.
These Baked Macaroni and Cheese Balls made my day. This healthier version of fried macaroni and cheese tastes just like the original recipe, but has a fraction of the fat and calories. Plus, you don't need fifty napkins to wipe all of the grease off of your fingers. That's gotta count for something, right? Saving trees? Going green? It's all a plus in my book.
Not only are these little balls of ooey, gooey, cheesy goodness better for you, but they are fun to put together! Kind of like grown-up play-doh, if you will. And who doesn't love transforming leftovers into something delicious and fun to make?? If you have a kiddo or two, grab them and have them help make dinner. Or hog all of the fun for yourself. However you decide to make this recipe, you will enjoy the entire process, all the way down to taking the last delicious bite.
Baked Macaroni and Cheese Balls (adapted from Averie Cooks)
(about 10 macaroni balls)
2 cups leftover macaroni and cheese (homemade or from a box)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I used Panko breadcrumbs, but any kind will do)
1 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Make sure leftover macaroni and cheese is really cold. I suggest putting it in the freezer for about 20 minutes before preparing.
While the macaroni and cheese is chilling in the freezer, get out three bowls. Add flour to one bowl, the egg to another, and the breadcrumbs to the remaining bowl. Whisk the egg slightly to break it up. Season the flour with salt and pepper to taste.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare a cookie sheet by lining it with aluminum foil . Drizzle one tablespoon of olive oil on aluminum foil and spread around to coat the foil evenly.
When macaroni is chilled, remove from freezer. Scoop a tablespoon amount of macaroni and cheese and roll it around in your hands to make sure the ball is tightly packed. You want each ball to be uniform in size, about 1 or 1.5 inches in diameter.
Roll each ball through the flour, then the egg, and lastly the breadcrumbs. Place on prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove cookie sheet from oven, flip the macaroni balls over, and bake another 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve warm with various condiments and dipping sauces.
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Nutritional Info (this will vary depending on the macaroni and cheese recipe you use)
Servings Per Recipe: 10
Amount Per Serving:
Total Fat: 2.7 g
Cholesterol: 20.5 mg
Sodium: 120.5 mg
Total Carbs: 13.7 g
Fiber: 0.6 g
Sugars: 1.0 g
Protein: 3.2 g
-Easy to make
-Delicious, comfort food
-Simple list of ingredients
-Great for a snack or appetizer
-Recipe is easily doubled
-Healthier alternative to fried cheese balls
-Crowd and kid pleaser
-Does not have many nutritional benefits
Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5
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