Thursday, July 18, 2013

Cheerio Mac, Cookbook Review & Giveaway

It's been a while since I've done a cookbook review and I have to be honest- I have a bunch of them I need to review, but have gotten into a cooking slump, as of late. Last week I was in my usual it's too hot to cook/I don't want to cook mood, then I remembered a cookbook I needed to review, that was packed with easy recipes. Mac N' Cheese to the Rescue by Kristen Kuchar, focuses on using boxed Mac n' Cheese and transforming it into something totally different. This cookbook is perfect for my family, since my children only like blue box Mac n' Cheese. Rather than have boring ole blue box, I went through the cookbook and found a recipe both kids agreed we should try. This recipe is a play on a traditional English recipe; Shepherd's Pie. Except Mac n' Cheese replaces the mashed potatoes.

Now being who I am, many of you know how often a fail to read a recipe the whole way through and the end result is often different from what the recipe intended. Which is the case here. I was cooking, and trying to listen to the kids playing outside and as a result, skipped the last part of the recipe, where it stated to place the beef mixture in the bottom and top with the mac n' cheese. So, I mixed everything together, put it in a baking dish and topped with cheese. You know what? I think I preferred it this way. I liked how everything was mingling together and took on the flavours of the dish. The ground beef mixture elevated the mac n' cheese into something more flavourful and exciting. The kids loved it and Hubby polished off the rest, when he came home. I am looking forward to trying more recipes, from this inventive cookbook which takes boring boxed mac n' cheese and turns it into something more exciting. The plus here, is that most of the recipes use everyday ingredients found in most pantries across the world.


Do you think you'd be interested in turning boxed mac n' cheese into something better? Well, the generous people at Ulysses Press, have graciously offered to send one of my readers a copy of this cookbook.  If you'd like to enter to win, please leave me a comment, telling me about one convenience food your family can't seem to do without. 

**Contest open to Canadian and U.S residents until July 22nd**

Cheerio Mac
adapted from Mac n' Cheese to the Rescue

1 box deluxe mac n' cheese
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 C frozen peas
1/2 C frozen corn
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp garlic salt
1 C shredded English Cheddar Cheese (4oz)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cook the mac n' cheese as directed; set aside.

In  a large deep nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, brown the ground beef, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. Cook until browned and cooked through, about 10 minutes. Drain off fat.

Once the meat is cooked, turn the heat to low and stir in the onion and garlic. Continue to cook for an additional 10 minutes. Continue to cook for an additional 10 minutes. Add peas, corn, black pepper, thyme and garlic salt, Stirring well.

Transfer the ground beef and vegetable mixture to a deep casserole dish. Evenly distribute the cooked mac n' cheese over the top. Then top with the cheddar cheese. Bake uncovered until the cheese starts to brown, about 20 minutes.

This post linked to

Tasty Tuesday
Wednesday Extravaganza
Wonderful Food Wednesday
What's Cookin Wednesday
Wicked Good Wednesday
Thursday Favorite Things
Full Plate Thursday
Inspire Us Thursday


Bernadette said...

Oh MY GOSH! Do you know how many times I have mentioned blue box mac & cheese and my daughter??!! I need this book!! I wonder how much convincing it will take her to pick something to make from it :)

Kimberly Pearlman said...

My go-to is generally mashed potatoes. But I'm a sucker for mac & cheese too. :)

Susan said...

This looks so yummy. My kids grew up eating a lot of boxed Mac and cheese. I still like it. One other convenience food we love a lot is Uncle Ben's Chicken Vegetable Rice in a box. Cooks in 10 minutes and is a good side with grilled chicken and a vegetable. Thanks for chance to win.

Anonymous said...

So many convenience foods to choose from - boxed rice, mac 'n cheese, even salad dressing mixes. I love taking instant mashed potatoes and use them as a thickner instead of making a rue. The salad dressing mixes like Italian or Ranch, combined with ground meat and maybe onion and/or pepper make for an interesting hamburger or meatloaf. robeader53@yahoo.com

Andrea Amy said...

convenience food...i pretty much cook from scratch but my youngest loves KD and my 6 year old loves campbells cream of mushroom soup :)

andrea_hockeygirl at hotmail dot com

Miz Helen said...

Thank you so much for sharing your awesome recipe with Full Plate Thursday. Have a great weekend and hope to see you soon!
Miz Helen

spike said...

I try to cook from scratch when I can - even though there's always a box of KD in the cupboard! My go to convenience food is canned tomatoes - not much you can't do with them!

Cyndy said...

We are a blue box mac and cheese family, too! But, something else we love is Francesco Rinaldi's Sweet and Tasty Tomato pasta sauce.

Donnas said...

We always have KD in the house, gotta love it, but the family is also fond of Hamburger Helper.
I much prefer to cook from scratch, but the above foods really help in a pinch.

Shannon said...

We are a mac & cheese family for sure but ramen is also something that we add into salad and use for the crunchiness on top of things. This cookbook looks wonderful with some great ways to mix up something that we love so much!