Ham, broccoli and cheese is a classic combo that most everyone loves. And it really doesn’t get more comfort food than mac & cheese. Ham Broccoli Mac is such a great weeknight meal that the whole family will enjoy. It won’t break the bank and nothing is too hard to come by – you probably have most of it in your kitchen at any given time. The one real key to the success of this dish is that you must cook it all in the same pot.
The great thing about this one pot dinner is that you don’t have to make a separate sauce to be added. By cooking the pasta in the broth, it releases enough starch to thicken the cheese sauce in the end. If you want to use all broth for more flavor or all water, you can change it up as you need. The important thing is to make sure there is enough liquid in the pan to cook the noodles to al dente, so as long as the noodles are completely submerged in the pan, you will be good to go.
You will notice that I listed fresh or frozen broccoli cuts for this recipe. You can use either and it will cook to about the same doneness. I do not like my broccoli to be over cooked or mushy. So by adding it fresh or frozen allows it cook just enough to be steamed but still crisp. If you prefer it to be a little more done than that, you can add it to the pan a little sooner. But still wait to add the cheese until the last 5 minutes.
This is a super filling dish – you really will not need any side dishes to go with this. You have all the staples – meat, veg and starch – all in one pan. The clean up is super easy too with just a few bowls, forks and the saute pan (you need a big saute pan, a twelve inch one works best).
Now Let’s Get Cookin’!
Ham Broccoli Mac
- 2 tbsp Oil
- ½ Medium Yellow Onion minced
- 2 Garlic Cloves minced
- 1 tsp Paprika
- 1½ lb Spiral ham cut into ½inch chunks
- 1½ lb Spiral Pasta
- 1 qt Broth chicken or vegetable
- 2 cups Water if needed
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Pepper
- 1 cup Milk
- 3 cups Cheddar Cheese finely shredded
- 1 tsp Ground Mustard
- 2 cups Broccoli cuts fresh or frozen
- In a large saute pan over medium high heat, add oil, onion, garlic and paprika. Let cook for 2 minutes than add ham and let cook 3 minutes more.
- Add pasta, salt, pepper and broth. Add only enough water to make sure the pasta is submerged. Bring to just a bubble, then reduce heat to medium and cover pan. Let cook for 20 minutes.
- Add cheese, milk, ground mustard and broccoli and thoroughly stir to combine. Replace lid and let it cook another 5 minutes.
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Estelle Forrest self-published this cookbook after a lot of playing around in the kitchen. You can purchase your own copy here:
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