Chicken & Veg Mac and Cheese

Okay so how GOOD is Mac and cheese? SOOO DELICIOUS! I thought I'd add some veggies and chicken to bulk out the recipe, and boy was that decision AMAZING! 

Serves 4-6
250g elbow pasta
300g chicken tenderloins, sliced into strips
1 broccoli, cut into florrets 
50g baby spinach leaves 
5 button mushrooms, sliced 
1 brown onion, diced
1 garlic clove, crushed 
½ cup panko breadcrumbs, toasted 
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
1/3 cup plain flour
800ml whole milk
2-3 cups shredded cheese (Cheddar, Colby, mozzarella)
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
1 tsp paprika 
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tbsp. Fresh parsley, chopped  


  1. Cook pasta according to packet instructions (minus 2 minutes!) set aside to cool. 
  2. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  3. Using a small pan with a tiny splash of olive oil, add broccoli, spinach, onion, fresh garlic and mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes until veggies are half cooked though. Remove from pan and set aside.
  4. In the same pan, add chicken and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until completely cooked through.
  5. In a large pot, add butter and melt over medium heat.
  6. Once melted, add flour and mix for one minute. Use a whisk to separate the clumps.
  7. Add 250ml of milk, stirring to try to dissolve the flour paste into the milk.
  8. Add remaining milk and continue to whisk until lump free. 
  9. Add salt, pepper, garlic powder, mustard powder and fresh parsley. Stir through.
  10. Stir for 5-8 minutes until the milk has thickened to a cream like consistency. A way to check this is, coat a spoon in the mixture and using the back of the spoon, you should be able to draw a thick pathway with your finger.
  11. Remove from stove and add cheese, chicken and the vegetable mixture. Mix through.
  12. Add the cooked elbow pasta into the pot and stir through, ensuring to coat well.
  13. Top with panko crumbs and a sprinkle of paprika.
  14. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes ot until the top is lightly golden brown.