I made a similar recipe on my Instagram stories last week and had a ton of you try it out for your little ones. You and your kiddos seemed to love it, so I wanted to make it into a simple recipe you can always reference!
I know that boxed macaroni and cheese can be a huge help on a busy day, but I hate using powdered cheese for my child. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve done it and I know I’ll do it again, but when I have the time I like to whip up this MUCH healthier cheesy pasta dish that’s packed with flavor and nutrients. Bonus, the whole family can enjoy this dish, and I know it will satisfy and keep you and your little one full much longer than the packaged stuff.
I love adding a green of some sort to my pasta. The color is beautiful, and it adds some texture (adding a different texture to your food is excellent for little ones to help avoid picky eating) and flavor outside of just cheesy pasta. What’s even yummier that you have to try adding… TUNA! Okay, you’re going to have to trust me on this. There is something about tuna in pasta that is So. Dang. Good! It adds a bit of saltiness, but it also brings nutritional value: omega-3 fatty acids and it’s full of B-Vitamins. Give this dish a try and let me know what you think. My daughter, Temple, absolutely LOVES this dish!
SIDENOTE: I’m often asked about safe cookware. I’ve mentioned on Instagram stories how much I love my Xtrema 10″ 100% ceramic and nontoxic skillet. All their ceramics are safe for the oven, stove, and microwave. For this recipe, I used my Xtrema 2.5-quart silicone steamer inside my 2.5-quart Versa pot to steam my broccoli. I was kind of nervous about how the silicone steamer would work, but seriously, I’m obsessed. Yesterday I steamed some green beans, and they were perfection. I used to use my plastic food steamer that I’ve had for years, but this not only steams my food better but it is safe! Such a great non-toxic cooking alternative to plastic steamers. Xtrema is made from 100% ceramic and is all-natural and non-toxic. Can’t recommend this brand enough if you are looking for more nontoxic cookware. Always keeping it real with all of you, I am an affiliate now after reaching out to this brand and telling them how much I have loved their products. If you decide to make a purchase then I am always grateful if you use these links. Let me know if you have any specific questions about their products and I’d be happy to help.
Broccoli & Tuna Parmesan Pasta
- 1 lb. pasta of choice (I recommend elbow or shells for kids. I love using Jovial brand brown rice pasta)
- 1 1/2 cups broccoli, steamed and trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 5oz. can of tuna, drained (I love Wild Planet brand)
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter or ghee
- 3 tbsp. milk of choice (I use MALK brand unsweetened almond milk)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- Begin by steaming broccoli florets. I steam my broccoli in my Xtrema 2.5-quart silicone steamer which fits perfectly inside my 2.5-quart Versa Pot. I fill my versa pot halfway with water and place the steamer basket with broccoli inside then place the steamer lid on top. I bring my water to a boil, and once it's boiling I turn heat down to medium and continue to steam until broccoli is tender (about 10 minutes total.) Such a great non-toxic cooking alternative to plastic steamers. Xtrema is made from 100% ceramic and is all-natural and non-toxic.
- As broccoli steams, begin boiling water for your pasta. Once water is boiling, stir in pasta, cook according to the package. I love using Jovial brown rice pasta for a gluten-free alternative but use whatever pasta you prefer.
- When broccoli is done steaming and cooled, cut into bite-size pieces.
- Once pasta is done, drain in a colander. While pasta is draining, add your minced garlic, milk, and butter to the warm saucepan. Once butter is melted, add your chopped broccoli and tuna. Stir to combine and make sure tuna is broken into bite-size pieces.
- Add cooked pasta back to the saucepan and stir well. Season with the salt and pepper. Add your parmesan cheese, stir to combine. Serve and enjoy!