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May 12, 2010

Written by:  Aimee Thomes Plesa 
 
As a mother of 4, I know how hard it can be to get your kids to eat a balanced diet. Right now, my youngest will only eat corn dogs, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, bacon, chicken nuggets and fruit. It is a daily battle to get him to try new foods. Some days I win, but most days he does. Luckily, I came across a recipe for a side dish that includes all 4 food groups. After a few trial runs and some tweaking, I can proudly say my pickiest eater is finally spreading his wings and eating spinach. But I will never tell him that! He likes it for the bacon and the cheese, what he doesn't know won't hurt me.

CREAMY SPINACH NOODLES
Ingredients
  • 2 cups egg noodles
  • 6 slices bacon
  • 2 tablespoon chopped onion
  • 6 teaspoon all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 8 ounces fresh baby spinach
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions
Cook the noodles according to the directions on the package. When done, drain and pour into a serving bowl. While the noodles are cooking, cook bacon and onion together until the bacon is crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and allow bacon to cool before crumbling. Add flour, salt and pepper to the grease in the frying pan, stirring until well blended. Slowly add milk. Bring mixture to a boil and cook until thickened, stirring frequently. Add spinach and cook the mixture until the leaves begin to wilt. Pour the milk mixture over top of the cooked egg noodles and add the cheese, stirring to coat. Sprinkle with bacon mixture just prior to serving.

You can make this recipe a little more budget friendly by taking advantage of the following sales at local grocery stores:
Kroger has store brand cheese 2/$5, Oscar Mayer bacon 3.99 and Vidalia onions 99 cents/lb. Marsh has milk 2/$4, Plumrose bacon $2.99 and Dole baby spinach 2/$5. Meijer has Kraft cheese 3/$6, Vidalia onions 59 cents/lb, Plumrose bacon 2.45 and baby spinach 2.99.

Photo Credit Aimee Plesa
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