The $3.39 Target Find My Family Can't Stop Eating

Both my kids scarfed it down.

<p>Simply Recipes / Mark Beahm</p>

Simply Recipes / Mark Beahm

My two kids have never met a bowl of macaroni and cheese they didn’t like, but they have strong opinions about the best macaroni and cheese.

My older kiddo, Byrd, loves a homemade baked version with crispy breadcrumbs, while my youngest, Hazel, loves creamy stovetop mac & cheese. For the lion’s share of their childhood, however, both kids have always loved the blue box.

So when Hazel, drawn in by the bright seafoam-colored box on a shelf at Target, asked to try Goodles, I was curious to see how it would compare to their tried-and-true favorite.

How To Make Goodles Cheddy Mac

Hazel requested Goodles for dinner that night, so I made them according to the instructions on the box. It’s a very similar process to making other boxed macaroni and cheese: Cook the noodles, drain them (never rinse!), and return the hot, cooked noodles to the pot with the enclosed seasoning packet, plus milk and (optional, but not really) butter.

I let Hazel help me with the stirring, and then she helped herself to a big scoop of Goodles.

<p>Simply Recipes / Photo Illustration by Wanda Abraham / Retailers below</p>

Simply Recipes / Photo Illustration by Wanda Abraham / Retailers below

Goodles Beats the Blue Box Fair and Square

Her review was characteristically enthusiastic. “YUM,” she shouted through a mouthful of noodles. Ever the exuberant six-year-old, she will often give something a positive review after one bite and then leave the rest on her plate. In this case, she joined the ranks of the Clean Plate Club before asking for dessert.

I helped myself to a bite out of the pot (what I like to call the "Mom’s Share") and I could see what she liked about them. The noodles, with their "hidden" vegetables (they're made with chickpea protein and nutrients from broccoli, spinach, and sweet potatoes, among other veggies), were pleasantly springy and sturdy, and the cheese sauce was well-seasoned and flavorful.

I was impressed. A boxed mac that can unseat the category’s juggernaut is no small thing. True, Goodles mac and cheese costs more than its best-known competitor, but this is a case of getting what you pay for: Goodles packs 14 grams of protein and six grams of soluble fiber per serving!

When it comes to my kids, carbs are an easy sell, but it’s much harder for me to find good sources of protein and fiber, so this felt like a big win.

Based on our success with the Cheddy Mac, the kids wanted to branch out with other Goodles flavors. Goodles’ new Mover & Shaker flavor, inspired by cacio e pepe, was a hit for Byrd’s sophisticated palate, while Hazel devoured a bowl of Shella Good, the aged white cheddar shells.

Read the original article on Simply Recipes.