This meal is hearty and full of flavor, nutrients and all of the things great! We cook this meal when we’ve had a long day full of work, snacks and are STARVING! The banza pasta and lean ground meat brings so much protein to the meal. This is one of those meals that the whole family will love and your kids will ask for over and over again.

Healthier High Protein Chili Mac and Cheese

A meal that every person in your family will love!
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Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 742 kcal


  • 1 lb lean ground meat 90/10 ground beef, venison, ground turkey
  • 1/2 red onion chopped
  • 1 jalapeno chopped, optional
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cayenne pepper exclude if sensitive to spice
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 4 tbsp tomato paste
  • 6 cups beef broth
  • 12 oz Banza or other chickpea pasta can use regular pasta
  • 2 cups shredded cheese mexican, cheddar or mozzarella (use 2% or fat free for lower fat content)


  • 1 cup green onions
  • 4 tbsp light sour cream or greek yogurt


  • Chop onion and jalapeño (if using).
  • In a pot or dutch oven, add 1 tbsp of olive oil on high heat.
  • Add onions and jalapeno to dutch oven and cook until onion becomes softened.
  • Mix in your choice of lean ground beef and make sure to break it up so it will cook evenly. Let cook for about 4-5 minutes or until mostly browned.
  • Add in chili powder, cayenne pepper, garlic powder and cumin.
  • Stir in tomato paste and beef broth and bring to a boil.
  • Once boiling, pour in your pasta and cook according to package. Around 8-12 minutes. Continue to stir because the liquid will begin to evaporate. If it begins to stick to the bottom, add a 1/2 cup of beef broth or water.
  • Preheat oven to 400.
  • Stir in half of your cheese.
  • Sprinkle the other half of the cheese on top of pasta.
  • Place pasta in oven for 5-7 minutes or until cheese is melted.
  • Serve in a bowl immediately with green onions and sour cream.


Nutrition facts are based on 90/10% ground beef, Banza protein pasta and 2% shredded cheese. 


Calories: 742kcalCarbohydrates: 60gProtein: 59gFat: 33g
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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