Easy Vegan Mac And Cheese Recipe
Mac and Cheese is one of the most popular comfort foods in the world. It is creamy, savory, and satisfying. However, traditional mac and cheese is not vegan-friendly due to the abundance of dairy products used in its preparation. Fortunately, there are vegan alternatives that offer the same delicious flavor without any animal products. This easy vegan mac and cheese recipe is perfect for those who want a tasty plant-based version of the classic dish.
For this recipe, you will need:
- 16 oz pasta (elbow, penne, or rigatoni)
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1 cup non-dairy milk (almond or soy milk)
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 cup vegan butter
- 1/4 cup breadcrumbs (optional)
Step 1: Cook the pasta
Start by cooking the pasta according to the instructions on the package. Drain the pasta once it is done and set it aside.
Step 2: Make the cheese sauce
In a blender, combine the cashews, non-dairy milk, nutritional yeast, cornstarch, lemon juice, garlic, salt, turmeric, smoked paprika, and black pepper. Blend the mixture until it is smooth and creamy.
Step 3: Cook the sauce
Melt the vegan butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Pour the blended sauce into the saucepan and whisk it constantly until it starts to boil. Reduce the heat and let the sauce simmer for 2-3 minutes until it thickens.
Step 4: Add the pasta
Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and stir it until the pasta is fully coated with the cheese sauce.
Step 5: Add breadcrumbs (optional)
If you like the crispy texture on top of your mac and cheese, add breadcrumbs to the top of the pasta. Place the dish in the oven and bake at 375°F for about 10 minutes until the breadcrumbs turn golden brown.
There are many ways to customize this vegan mac and cheese recipe. Here are a few ideas:
- Add roasted vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, or bell pepper to the pasta to make it more nutritious.
- For a spicy kick, add diced jalapenos or red pepper flakes to the cheese sauce.
- Use different types of pasta like macaroni, fusilli, or shells for some texture variation.
While traditional mac and cheese is high in cholesterol and saturated fat, this vegan version is packed with nutrients and antioxidants. Cashews are a good source of healthy fats, protein, and fiber. Nutritional yeast is loaded with vitamin B12, which is essential for red blood cell production and nerve function. Turmeric and smoked paprika have anti-inflammatory properties that can boost your immune system and improve digestion.
This easy vegan mac and cheese recipe is a delicious and healthy alternative to traditional mac and cheese. It is simple to make, customizable, and packed with nutrients and flavor. Whether you are a vegan or just looking for an easy weeknight dinner, this recipe is sure to please your taste buds and your body!