Pumpkin Mac & Cheese | Recipes | Cook For Your Life

Pumpkin Mac & Cheese

Rated 5 out of 5
5 out of 5 stars (based on 2 reviews)

Clock Icon for Prep Time 30 min prep
Clock Icon for Prep Time 27 min total
Person Icon for Serving Size 6 servings
Carrot Icon for Number of Ingredients Size 13 ingredients

If you are looking for a unique twist on a classic dish, look no further. This pumpkin mac and cheese is a wonderful way to add a nutritional boost to your usual mac and cheese...


  • Canola oil cooking spray
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 8 ounces whole-wheat pasta
  • 1 cup low-fat (1%) milk
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups (2½ ounces) sharp light (50% reduced fat) cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin
  • ½ teaspoon mustard powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)
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Nutrition Facts


298 cals


12 g

Saturated Fat

6 g

Polyunsaturated Fat

1 g

Monounsaturated Fat

4 g


37 g


3 g


0 g


14 g


218 mg


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat a 6-cup baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese, and toss to combine. Set mixture aside.
  3. In a large pot, boil 4 quarts of water. Add pasta and cook for 10 minutes, until slightly al dente. Drain in colander, and set aside.
  4. While pasta is cooking, heat the milk in a microwave or small saucepan until it steams, and set aside.
  5. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute, whisking slowly. Remove from heat and gradually add the milk while whisking to avoid lumps. Return the pot to medium-high heat and simmer the sauce until it thickens to consistency of stirred yogurt, about 3 minutes.
  6. Add cheddar cheese, pumpkin, mustard, black and cayenne peppers and nutmeg (optional), and stir until the cheese has melted completely. Mix the cooked pasta into the cheese mixture.
  7. Spread the mac and cheese in prepared baking dish, and sprinkle the top with the breadcrumb-Parmesan-cheese mixture. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until breadcrumbs are crisp and golden brown. Serve immediately.

Chef Tips

This recipe contains cancer fighting foods: whole grains. This recipe was specially crafted to support cancer prevention and survival. It adheres to AICR’s Cancer Prevention Recommendations. Learn more about AICR’s recipe guidelines.

Registered Dietitian Approved

Our recipes, articles, and videos are reviewed by our oncology-trained dietitians to ensure that each is backed with scientific evidence and follows the guidelines set by the Oncology Nutrition for Clinical Practice, 2nd Ed., published by the Oncology Nutrition Dietetic Practice Group, a professional interest group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and the American Institute for Cancer Research and the American Cancer Society