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This might just be my son’s favorite meal. I think the macaroni makes him think of it as mac and cheese. It’s a great, easy meal that gets in a protein and a veggie. I always have frozen peas in the freezer and a ham steak is another good, versatile freezer staple. This is a simple weeknight meal to throw together!

Gluten-free: Use your favorite gluten-free pasta.

Vegetarian: Omit ham steak; use 1 ½ c frozen mixed vegetables instead of 1 c frozen peas.

  • Duration
  • 4Servings


  • ¾ lb dried macaroni noodles

  • 2 Tbsp butter, divided

  • 1 lb ham steak, diced

  • 1 c frozen peas

  • ¼-½ c grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1 c pasta water, reserved

  • Salt and pepper, to taste


1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook the macaroni according to package instructions. Before draining, reserve 1 cup of the pasta cooking water.

2. In a large skillet, heat about ½ Tbsp butter over medium heat. Add the ham and peas and cook until peas are no longer frozen.

3. Add cooked pasta to pan and add ¼ cup Parmesan, ¼ cup pasta water, and the remaining butter. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

4. Toss, adding more cheese and/or pasta water to coat the pasta well (you don’t want it to be dry).

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