This Vegan Mac and Cheese will blow your mind! If you're like me, mac and cheese has roots in childhood. A hearty, comforting dish mom used to make for the Holidays or Sunday dinner. Mac and cheese was always my favorite side dish alongside a meal that tasted good going down but left me feeling sluggish and drained afterward.
I now know that traditional mac and cheese is high in saturated fat, cholesterol, and calories, which creates inflammation and plaque in my arteries. Eating a serving of traditional mac and cheese has 850 calories, 28 g of saturated fat, and 140 mg of cholesterol. None of this will help you if you’re trying to lose weight, improve your insulin sensitivity (reverse prediabetes or type 2 diabetes), and lower your blood pressure or cholesterol.
What makes this Vegan Mac and Cheese so awesome are the whole plant food ingredients.
Vegan Mac and Cheese has 10 key ingredients:
- Whole grain pasta (rotini/fusilli, elbow, penne or shells)
- Broccoli florets
- Nutritional yeast
- Lemon juice
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Cayenne pepper
This Vegan Mac and Cheese uses a half batch of Sersie's Favorite Cheese Sauce.
But now you can have your mac and cheese and eat it too—without all the bad stuff! The lightly steamed broccoli florets give this mac and cheese a nice crunch and nutrient boost. In fact, broccoli turns a side dish into a full meal.
How to Prepare
- Chop and steam broccoli florets until bright green (about 3 to 4 minutes). Be careful not to overcook the broccoli; you want a little bite to it. Drain, rinse with cool water to stop the cooking, and set aside.
- Boil peeled and chopped potatoes and carrots in a large pot of water for 15 minutes. Add cashews to the pot and continue boiling for another 3 to 4 minutes. Potatoes and carrots should be fork tender. Strain potatoes, carrots, and cashews and retain the cooking water (set aside).
- Add a half cup of the potato-carrot cooking water you set aside and all other ingredients to a high-speed blender. Blend and add more water until you reach the desired smooth and creamy consistency.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package instructions. You want your pasta al dente (or chewy and firm). Strain and return pasta to the pot. Immediately stir cheese sauce into the pasta and carefully fold in the broccoli. If the cheese sauce has cooled, turn up the heat to medium-low to reheat for a few minutes, stir, salt to taste and enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
Many of the store bought brands of vegan mac and cheese have additives and coconut oil, making it high in saturated fat. This homemade version is made without oil. Since the cheese sauce is primarily potatoes, carrots and cashews, this provides a lower fat, heart-healthy alternative.
This mac and cheese stores well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. I don't recommend freezing this mac and cheese.
This Vegan Mac and Cheese is hearty, comforting, and creamy. It’s only one-third of the calories of traditional mac and cheese, 1 g of saturated fat, and zero cholesterol. This recipe uses a half batch of Sersie’s Favorite Cheese Sauce with added whole wheat pasta, and broccoli florets make this a nutritious and delicious entrée or side dish.
Do you have a gluten allergy, or are you gluten-sensitive? Not to worry, just swap out the whole wheat pasta for a gluten-free whole grain alternative, like quinoa pasta shells. Either way, this Vegan Mac and Cheese is a winner!Print
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