Greens Mac 'n' Cheese From Jamie Oliver

June 23, 2021
4 Ratings
Photo by David Loftus
  • Prep time 25 minutes
  • Cook time 1 hour
  • Serves 6
Author Notes

"Swap spinach out for any kind of exciting fresh or frozen greens, discarding any tough stalks. I also sometimes add breadcrumbs to the top for bonus crunch. Tasty!" Excerpted ULTIMATE VEG: Easy & Delicious Meals for Everyone by Jamie Oliver. Copyright © 2020 by Jamie Oliver. Reprinted with permission from Flatiron Books. All rights reserved. Photography by David Loftus. —Food52

What You'll Need
  • 1 large leek
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 14 ounces broccolini
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 bunch fresh thyme (½ oz)
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups reduced-fat (2%) milk
  • 1 pound dried macaroni
  • 1 ounce Parmesan cheese
  • 5 ounces sharp cheddar cheese
  • 3 1/2 ounces baby spinach
  • 1 3/4 ounces flaked almonds
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Trim, halve and wash the leek and peel the garlic, then finely slice with the broccolini stalks, reserving the florets for later. Place the sliced veg in a large casserole pan over a medium heat with the butter, then strip in the thyme leaves and cook for 15 minutes, or until softened, stirring regularly. Stir in the flour, followed slowly by the milk, then simmer for 10 minutes, or until thickened, stirring regularly. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pan of boiling salted water for 5 minutes, then drain.
  2. Grate the Parmesan and most of the cheddar into the sauce, and mix well. Tip into a blender, add the spinach and whiz until smooth—you may need to work in batches. Season to perfection with sea salt and black pepper, then stir through the pasta and broccolini florets, loosening with a splash of milk, if needed. Transfer to a 14x10-inch baking dish, grate over the remaining cheddar and scatter over the almonds. Bake for 30 minutes, or until beautifully golden and bubbling.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Jenny Callentine
    Jenny Callentine
  • Carla Louise
    Carla Louise
  • morgan
  • shazcam

8 Reviews

morgan March 8, 2022
Great meal to prepare then chuck in the freezer in a oven and microwave safe dish for emergency meals. I keep one at the bach so if I get out there late I have something to look forward to and don't buy food on the way. I dobt limit myself to veggies either, anything green sitting in the veggie drawer goes in there and a tad of nutmeg too!
Jenny C. February 21, 2021
With adjustments, this was delicious. However, the sauce was really runny (even after thickening for 20 minutes). I ended up putting 2-3x the cheese it called for. It was still smooth and creamy without being too cheesy. I’m the future I’d use more flour or less milk.
shazcam December 7, 2020
I made this after seeing Jamie making it for School Kids..Very easy. I only used 1.5 Tbs of Flour and less than one litre of milk and half the spinach..I added a large handful of cooked bacon prior to putting in oven and a bit of mozzarella..Even though it is very Green it is Yum and Teen loved it..Great the next day also.
Carla L. May 8, 2020
This is a wonderful,easy and tasty recipe! I used regular Broccoli, Leek and baby Spinach for this and it is was prepared in no t i me! We only ate half that evening, so,when it was cold I cut it in large squares,a bit like a pie and froze it. A week later I reheated it in the microwave and it tasted as good as the day I made it! Yummy,thank you Jamie Oliver!
[email protected] February 21, 2020
Very confusing directions to me - why are we preparing the bechamel in a casserole dish on the stovetop, and then putting the whole thing into a baking dish? I would think we'd use a saute pan on stovetop?
Ida February 27, 2020
I think it is a difference in language. It says "casserole pan" in the recipe, which would probably be called a saucepan in American-English. I am neither a Brit nor an American, but in my language a saucepan is called "kasserolle" - very similar to "casserole" :)
[email protected] February 27, 2020
Aha! Thanks for the clarification.
shazcam December 7, 2020
Definately on the stove stop in frying pan for the first steps