VGF Mac-n-Cheese

If you’re thinking about going vegan, but afraid that you will miss all of your normal foods, I get it. That was my biggest fear, too. And so the first thing I did after making the decision, was to write down all of the comfort foods I used to eat. Mac-n-Cheese was at the top of that list.

I’ve had it for lunch, I’ve had it for dinner, for late-night snack, for afternoon snack, and probably for breakfast at some point. I’ve had it with caramelized onions, with chili, with peas, and jalapeños, too.

After some experimentation, and lots of internet searching, I came up with this recipe, modified from several others that I had seen. Here’s what I used for this dish.

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces gluten-free pasta
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 TBSP gluten-free flour
  • 1 1/2 cups almond milk, divided
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast, divided
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 shake of dried red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 large jalapeno, seeded and diced (optional)
  • salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

Start the water for your pasta. While waiting for that to boil, in a separate saucepan, add the olive oil over medium-high heat. When the oil begins to shimmer, add the flour.

Whisk the two together, then add 1/4 cup of the almond milk and whisk until the mixture looks like paste.

Add another 1/4 cup of almond milk and whisk again until smooth. Next, add 1/4 cup of the nutritional yeast. Whisk again, then add another 1/4 cup of the almond milk. The mixture should be bright yellow and a little less like paste now.

Add in the salt & pepper and the other 1/4 cup of nutritional yeast and taste. Adjust the flavor if needed. If you are using the jalapenos, add those in now. You can also add in more nutritional yeast if it doesn’t have enough of the ‘cheesy’ flavor you want.

Continue to add in almond milk, 1/4 cup at a time, whisking in-between. When the mixture is smooth, lump free, and a little thin, turn down the heat and let simmer.

By now the water for your pasta should ready. Cook the noodles according to directions. While they are cooking, continue to whisk your sauce often so it doesn’t burn. When the pasta is ready, drain the water and return the noodles to the pot. Pour the cheese sauce over the top and stir to combine. You are ready to serve!

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