Mac & Cheese Stuffed Pumpkin

by Kathy Strahs on October 17, 2013 · 11 comments

Post image for Mac & Cheese Stuffed Pumpkin

I’ll jump right to the punch line: this Mac & Cheese Stuffed Pumpkin was the best macaroni and cheese recipe I’ve ever made. That sounds overstated, but it’s true. And the thing is…I have a feeling I’ll want to say that after each recipe I try from Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese.

Forgive me, I may gush a little here but it is warranted. I thought I knew mac and cheese. This cookbook showed me nuances and places and directions that I never imagined mac and cheese could go.

Find Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese at Amazon

Take this recipe I’m sharing today, for example – which, in the book, is called Pumpkin Stuffed with Fontina, Italian Sausage and Macaroni. From the first glance, you know you’ve got something unique (my 3-year old has been bragging to everyone this week, “Mommy made mac and cheese in a pumpkin!!”). It’s not just a beautiful presentation, though – it tastes amazing too. The easy melting Fontina and Gruyère cheeses, the zesty sausage and woodsy herbs…all of these ingredients incredibly well-matched for the flesh of the sweet sugar pumpkin that contains them.

My friends Stephanie Stiavetti (of The Culinary Life) and Garrett McCord (of Vanilla Garlic) not only know their cheese pairings inside and out, but they showcase them superbly with a deep respect for the ingredients. And the recipes go way beyond just casseroles. It’s all about pairing pasta and amazing cheese, in every delicious way possible. I keep flipping back to the Chicken Breast Stuffed with Leonora Goat Cheese, Star Pasta and Crushed Gingersnaps recipe as well as the sweet section. Yes, there is even dessert-worthy macaroni and cheese in there. The Fromage Blanc, Chevre, Peach and Ghost Pepper Cannelloni is such a dazzling concept!

Without question, this is a book for cheese lovers. While I wasn’t familiar many of the cheeses mentioned, Stephanie and Garrett confidently guide us through what makes each cheese special and the right choice for the dish. Melt is a true celebration of macaroni and cheese – a celebration I highly recommend joining!

Mac & Cheese in a Pumpkin...from Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese

See the Recipe Index for all the recipes on Cooking On the Side.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Mike October 17, 2013 at 11:25 AM

Great recipe with a beautiful presentation. I think your photo is excellent too!

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Kathy Strahs October 17, 2013 at 11:28 AM

Thank you!!

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Garrett October 17, 2013 at 11:38 AM

Thank you so much for the high praise! I’m so glad your family enjoyed the recipe and the book! I’ve got to say, after seeing your photos I think I need to go and make this for myself again!
-Garrett
Garrett´s last blog post ..Panic: Sweet Potato Waffles

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Kathy Strahs October 17, 2013 at 11:53 AM

You and Stephanie must have had an amazing time creating all of these wonderful dishes!

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Stephanie October 17, 2013 at 12:56 PM

We did! I’m almost afraid to think about how much cheese we consumed in a year. ;)

And thank you for this wonderful post. So glad your boy liked the dish. Little ones are a tough crowd!
Stephanie´s last blog post ..12 Food Bloggers’ Favorite Cookbooks: A #Giveaway

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sara October 17, 2013 at 5:34 PM

Yum, this looks AMAZING! What a great idea. I’ve done pumpkin stuffed with bread and cheese, but the idea of stuffing it with mac and cheese is so cool! :)
sara´s last blog post ..Pizza Bianca e Verde

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Deauna October 18, 2013 at 4:06 AM

This is such a beautiful presentation! A great recipe too. Definitely inspires me too try cooking Mac and cheese in different ways.
Deauna´s last blog post ..Pan-Fried Pumpkin Pie Polenta

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Chelsea October 18, 2013 at 8:30 AM

Wow! That is so cool – my kids would LOVE eating out of a pumpkin, too… who am I kidding… I would LOVE it, too -ha!
Chelsea´s last blog post ..Woody Harrelson’s Parenting Advice for Owen Wilson

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Stephanie @ Plain Chicken October 20, 2013 at 11:38 AM

What a beautiful dish! Looks delicious.
Stephanie @ Plain Chicken´s last blog post ..What’s For Dinner?

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Angela October 23, 2013 at 5:07 PM

AMAZING!! Just made this tonight. Really easy and tasted awesome! They guys really liked it. I used chicken sausage since I have a non-pork eater. Went well with the unoaked Viognier (I had a Hilmy Cellars wine).

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Kathy Strahs October 23, 2013 at 5:27 PM

Awesome!! I’m glad it worked out! :-)

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