Macaroni cheese recipe with kale

Prep 20 minutes, cook 25 minutes

Looking for a good macaroni cheese recipe? It has to be one of the ultimate comfort foods and an instant crowd pleaser for keeping the family happy. Serve with a crisp side salad for an easy yet delicious meal.

Along with being comfort in a bowl, this macaroni cheese recipe from Discover Great Veg also utilises the wellbeing power of kale. Kale is a nutrient powerhouse and can help to promote a healthy immune system, thanks to its high levels of vitamin A and C. These essential vitamins help us to stay feeling healthy and keep the bugs at bay. They also keep the linings and connective tissues of the body healthy and strong.

Kale is also fantastic for our skin due to the high levels of manganese that it contains. Manganese is an important nutrient in the production of collagen and can help our skin appear plumper and improve its elasticity.

There’s no hard and fast rules with this macaroni cheese recipe – it’s an excellent one for using up pieces of cheese in the fridge and you can swap for different pasta shapes too. Don’t be afraid to get inventive and use what you already have in the kitchen.

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  • 250g kale, thick stalks removed
  • 250g macaroni
  • 1 leek, sliced (approx. 185g)
  • 25g butter
  • 25g plain flour
  • 350ml semi-skimmed milk
  • 150g Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 2 tsp English mustard


  1. Preheat the oven to 200oC, 180oC fan, gas mark 6.
  2. Cook the kale in a large pan of boiling water for three minutes, remove with a slotted spoon and cool under cold water, squeeze out the excess liquid. Add the macaroni to the boiling water and cook for 10 minutes, adding the leek for the last two minutes. Drain well and return to the pan.
  3. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small pan, stir in the flour and cook for one minute. Off the heat, gradually blend in the milk, then bring to the boil, stirring until thickened.  Stir in 100g cheese and the mustard, season well.
  4. Stir the sauce into the macaroni with the kale and transfer to an ovenproof serving dish, sprinkle with remaining cheese and bake for 25 minutes until golden.