Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese is a fun twist on a classic! Creamy white cheese sauce is loaded with cooked spinach and artichokes, then tossed with penne pasta for a seriously grown up, comforting mac and cheese recipe.
Spinach artichoke mac and cheese is totally one of my favorites. Lots of cheese, but also lots of vegetables. It’s all about balance.
What we’re dealing with is serious comfort food. If you haven’t had fontina cheese before then you’re in for a life changing event.
Its rich and salty, but also a little pricey and hard to find (at least in my neck of the woods). Don’t worry about the cost though, its totally worth it. Totally.
The spinach and artichokes make you think you’re getting your veggies while the pasta and various cheeses fill you up and warm your belly. It’s a creamy, dreamy vegetarian dinner.
Perfect for a special occasion or even a night alone, this cheesy pasta is just what every occasion should call for.
Spinach artichoke mac and cheese can be customized! Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Swap the frozen spinach for 4 cups fresh. Just wilt it in a hot pan, remove any excess water by squeezing it out, and then chop
- Swap the frozen artichokes for unmarinated canned or jarred, drained
- Swap the fontina for mozzarella cheese
- Use gluten-free pasta to make this gluten-free
Spinach and Artichoke Mac and Cheese
- 1 pound semolina or whole wheat penne
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 Tablespoons butter
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 3 Tablespoons flour
- ½ cup white wine
- 2 cups milk
- ¼ teaspoon grated or ground nutmeg, or to taste
- 10 ounces frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and wrung dry in a kitchen towel
- 10 ounces frozen chopped artichokes, defrosted and wrung dry in a kitchen towel
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup shredded Fontina cheese, plus additional for sprinkling on top
- 1 cup Parmesan cheese, plus additional for sprinkling on top
- Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Coat a 9×13 glass baking dish or other large casserole with cooking spray. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt the water and cook the pasta to al dente according to package directions.
- While the pasta water is coming to a boil, place and medium pot over medium-low heat with the olive oil and the butter. When the butter is melted add the onion and garlic and cook until very soft, about 10 minutes.
- Turn the heat up to medium-high and sprinkle the flour in the pan. Whisk for about 1 minute, then whisk in the wine, cooking for another minute. Whisk the milk into the pan and bring up to a bubble. Add the nutmeg, spinach, artichokes, salt and pepper to the sauce and simmer until thickened and the vegetables are warmed through, 2-3 minutes. Add 1 cup of each of the cheeses to the sauce and stir until melted.
- Toss the sauce with the cooked pasta and transfer to the prepared baking dish.Sprinkle some more Fontina and Parmesan cheese over the top and bake until the cheese has melted and the top is golden brown, about 30 minutes.