12Sep2016 Ham and Cheese Ranch Macaroni Salad This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Smithfield. This Ham and Cheese Ranch Macaroni Salad is perfect for get-togethers and busy school nights! Macaroni pasta with cubed ham, ranch dressing, and vegetables – this is a wonderful pasta salad recipe! We’re about a month into school over here and I feel like I need a medal! Silas is in 2nd grade and Wesley is in Kindergarten. For the most part, it went smoothly. But I will admit, there were a few bumps along the way these past few weeks. I was wondering all summer how Wesley would react to all day Kindergarten. Mainly because, he TOLD me he didn’t want to go several times! Actually, he fluctuated between saying he wanted to stay home with me and saying he wanted to go back to his preschool class. The first few days of school he did fine, and then the tears started. More like sobbing right before school every day. Luckily I was able to talk him through it and that only lasted about 3 days. I’m so happy that he has his big brother to talk to and walk him into school so he’s not alone. Silas makes me so proud! Needless to say, when I’m dealing with the hard stuff of letting kids grow up (they can stop now!) there are many nights that I really “flub” dinner. Some of the best nights come out of just a bit of preplanning. I made a batch of this Ham and Cheese Ranch Macaroni Salad on a Sunday night last week, and it was perfect to serve with various easy dinners (sandwiches, grill outs, etc). Plus, containers of salad tucked into lunch boxes is a great switch up to a tranditional mid-day meal. Ham and Cheese Ranch Macaroni Salad By Kelly Miller A macaroni salad recipe with cubed ham, green pepper, tomato, onion, and ranch salad dressing. Prep time: 00:20, Cook time: 00:00, Total time: 00:20 Yield: 12 servings Ingredients: 2 cups macaroni pasta, cooked and rinsed under cool water 8 oz Smithfield Anytime Favorites Hickory Smoked Cubed Ham 2 roma tomatoes, diced 1/2 green pepper, diced 1 cucumber, peeled and cubed 1/4 cup onion, diced 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese 1 cup prepared ranch salad dressing Instructions: Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Serve cold. This is one of those pasta salad recipes where you just keep going back to the bowl and grabbing a fork-full, yum!! One of my absolute favorite shortcuts in the kitchen when I’m preparing meals for my family, is Smithfield Anytime Favorites Hickory Smoked Cubed Ham. There are just so many different recipes that use this delicious ham – from soups to salads to casseroles. It’s such a great idea to keep a package in your refrigerator for busy back to school nights. There are over 20 different cuts available as well – including sliced, diced, cubed, chops and steak. Select Smithfield Anytime Favorites are available at grocery stores nationwide. For many more meal and recipe ideas, visit Smithfield’s website or their Facebook page. What are your favorite recipes that use cubed ham as the main ingredient? Leave your ideas in the comment section below! This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Smithfield.