A Comfort Food Favorite Goes Vegan

Vegan macaroni and cheese
msheldrake/iStock/GettyImages

Win your family over to the vegan side by tempting them with a plant-based version of mac and cheese. Many vegan recipes for this comfort food exist, but they often include long prep time that involves soaking nuts or peeling butternut squash. This recipe gives you the cheesy flavor your family craves, without the actual cheese. Nutritional yeast provides the earthy flavor of cheese and is available in most health food markets and some grocery stores. This recipe mixes together quickly enough to make on a busy weeknight. Serve it with a large green salad or toss frozen broccoli or peas into the cheesy pasta for a complete meal.

Total Time: 40 minutes | Prep Time: 20 minutes | Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 3 small carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 /2 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 2 cups elbow macaroni, cooked
  • Additional kosher salt and black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil over high heat. Add the potatoes and carrots and cook for 10 minutes, or until soft. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of water, and cool the vegetables for 5 minutes.
  2. Transfer the vegetables to a blender and puree. Add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of hot water as necessary to ensure smooth blending.
  3. Add the nutritional yeast, lemon juice, vinegar, kosher salt, onion and garlic powders and yellow mustard. Pulse to blend thoroughly. Add more salt and black pepper to taste.
  4. Stir this sauce into the cooked macaroni and serve. 

Tip

Use a different shape of pasta for variety. Choose one with a lot of nooks and crannies for the sauce to sink into, such as rotini or cavatappi.