Bugs, Worms, & Macaroni is a great dish to serve at the annual Halloween BOO-ffet. It’s quick and easy, too, only taking about 15 minutes hands-on time to create a delicious dish (until you hear the name, of course, at which time it becomes a bit gross and disgusting). With the exception of the pasta which is cooked on the stove, this scary dish is prepared in the microwave.
Spiders, bugs, and worms seem to be a prominent theme in modern-day Halloween celebrations. Although I understand that Halloween evolved from an ancient holiday honoring the dead (hence ghouls, goblins, ghosts, witch’s, and body parts supposedly from the dead), I was curious to find out why bugs and worms have been factored into the annual celebration. I checked out several web sites to learn the answer. None of the sites I visited actually addressed the issue of bugs and worms. My guess is that dead bodies attract bugs and worms, but that certainly isn’t official. Two fun websites to check out if you have questions about Halloween are: History.com and Holidays.net.
Since this recipe uses American processed cheese (which technically isn’t even really cheese), I thought it was okay to use canned evaporated milk. Those two ingredients certainly make it anything but gourmet, however, my official Halloween tasters, consisting of grandkids with friends, along with their parents and a few other adults, insured me that this was delicious and considerably better than the boxed variety.
Bugs, Worms, & Macaroni
1 pound corkscrew pasta, which seems to be the scariest, or substitute large elbow macaroni or penne
1 pound pasteurized process cheese spread, cut into 1" cubes
1 12 oz. can evaporated milk
2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco pepper sauce
1 14 oz. can pitted black olives, drained and cut in half lengthwise, or substitute whole pimento stuffed olives or a mixture of both
1 12 oz. package hotdogs, each cut into 8 lengthwise strips
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add a tablespoon of salt and the pasta.
- Prepare the sauce while the pasta is cooking.
- Place the processed cheese spread and evaporated milk in a large microwaveable bowl; microwave 3 minutes.
- Remove the mixture from the microwave and stir; microwave 1-3 additional minutes, stirring every minute, until the cheese is melted and the mixture is smooth.
- Stir in the grated cheese and Tabasco pepper sauce.
- When the pasta is cooked al dente, drain it well in a colander and mix with the hot cheese sauce and olives; keep warm.
- Place the hotdog strips in a single layer on a paper towel lined plate, cover with another paper towel.
- Microwave 2-3 minutes or until the pieces are hot and begin to curl.
- Stir the hot dog pieces into the pasta mixture and serve.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 460 Calories from Fat 231
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 50% Protein 21% Carb. 29%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 26 g
Saturated Fat 14 g
Cholesterol 69 mg
Sodium 1026 mg
Total Carbohydrate 33 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 24 g
Vitamin A 18% Vitamin C 11% Calcium 0% Iron 9%