Happy Friday! Told ya I’d be back this week with some recipe posts! Sure It’s Friday and I’ve only gotten around to one post, but it’s a start, right?! Moving right along 😉
Erik and I were wandering the grocery store the other day hoping something would spark our interest for a dinner idea. We were in that zombie starving state of mind where we thought everything would take like a bazillion hours to make or just wouldn’t be satisfying enough. We ended up with a some beers and decided to order in, still took a bazillion hours! How is it that in a huge store filled with food it is sometimes so hard to figure out a meal??
Before we bailed, we were in some random isle gazing around when Erik picked up the bright blue and yellow box from childhood, the Mac ‘n Cheese. He asked why I couldn’t just be easy and whip up
that poison in a box some easy comfort food. Seriously? It was like he forgot who he was dating. I’ll blame it on the hunger. Ugh, sorry but I cannot believe that use to suffice as a meal when we were kids. Even though I wouldn’t touch that now, it did make me want to make a way healthier and vegan version.
This was super easy to throw together! You could enjoy it straight from the pot or bake it with some breadcrumbs for some real comfort food!!
Vegan Mac and Cheese:
- 1 package of GF Pasta – I used a quinoa pasta
- 1 cup water
- 1 med potato – peeled and chopped
- 1/2 yellow onion – chopped
- 1/2 cup coconut milk (I think any non dairy milk should do)
- 3/4 cup raw cashews
- juice from 1 small lemon
- 1 garlic clove – minced
- 3-4 tbsp nutritional yeast (add to liking)
- 1 tsp salt – I added a little more for taste
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard or mustard powder
- dash of cayenne pepper – i gave it a large dash
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Optional: bread crumbs
- If baking, pre-heat oven to 375. Grease a small oven safe dish, preferably a 9×9.
- Prepare pasta according to directions. If baking, place cooked pasta in dish.
- In a small saucepan, bring the 1 cup water, potato, and onion to a boil for a few minutes. Reduce heat and simmer for about 12 minutes. (This was actually when I cooked the pasta)
- Add all the remaining ingredients to a high-powered blender, preferably a Vitamix. When potato and onions are done, add to blender, with water. Blend for a couple of minutes until completely creamy.
- Spread cheese mixture over pasta, folding and mixing with pasta. When combined top with bread crumbs.
- Cover with fold and bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil and broil for another 5 minutes. Watch closely to not burn the bread crumbs. Remove and cool slightly, serve and enjoy!!
Far from the standard baked Mac and Cheese full of fat and unhealthiness, this dish will not leave you feeling guilty. Some pros: Quinoa (in the pasta) is a complete protein, has anti-inflammatory properties, and is high in calcium. Creating a non dairy, non soy cheese sauce, has pluses too. The cashews are a low-fat nut, rich in copper, and magnesium (healthy nerves and bones!) Turmeric is also amazing an amazing addition. It helps the body is SO many ways, a couple being a huge anti inflammatory and aids in prevention of disease (cancer).
So go ahead and blend up some creamy, healthy, hearty cheese sauce and enjoy over some yummy pasta!