Vegan Mac-n-Cheese (Gluten Free too!)

IMG_8644I have spent a really long time perfecting my vegan/gluten free mac-n-cheese recipe. This is due to a number of factors: 1. I am an American so OBVIOUSLY I grew up on Kraft mac n cheese. 2. I LOVE pasta and I LOVE cheese. 3. To me, creating a mac-n-cheese recipe that would actually resemble original macaroni and cheese in texture, appearance and most importantly- taste, has been my greatest obstacle up until now. I have literally gone through about 15 different recipes and 15 different recipe variations. Since I became a vegan, I have probably attempted macaroni and cheese at least 30-40 times. Sometimes with fantastic results- other times with disastrous outcomes. I think, however, that I have finally perfected a dairy free and gluten free alternative to this all time American favorite comfort food. So without further ado, here it is…the recipe of all vegan mac-n-cheese recipes!

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Vegan Mac-n-Cheese Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cup raw cashews
  • ¾ cups filtered water
  • 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 ½ tsp Himalayan salt
  • ½ clove garlic
  • ¼ tsp chili powder
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp Dijon mustard

Instructions:

  • Blend all the ingredients in a high speed blender (I used my Vitamix)

For the pasta:

There are a number of good options. Regarding shape: I have tried everything from short pasta to long, tubes and squares, fusilli and penne, etc… I found that the spiraled pasta worked the best in terms of surface area for the cheese sauce.

UnknownAs for the pasta itself, for gluten free mac n cheese, I have attempted buckwheat pasta, lentil pasta, quinoa and rice pasta, millet pasta and the like. I found that the best substitute for normal macaroni was a mix of lupin and rice flour pasta (in the shape of fusilli/spirals) by a brand called Bio-in which I find in health food stores in Italy. The next best option was the quinoa mix pasta.

  • Boil the pasta according to the instructions (you judge the amount based on the desired creaminess and cheese-pasta ratio!)
  • Mix the cooked pasta with the cheese sauce and add any extras if desired (this time I used baby spinach, but steamed broccoli works, or sautéed mushrooms would be good as well!)
  • Serve and enjoy!

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