Friday, March 8, 2013

Vegan Macaroni and Cheese

One of the reasons I'm only vegetarian, not full-on vegan, is that I love cheese. The switch from cow's milk to almond milk was easy, buying vegan sprinkles was easy, but finding a suitable substitute for cheese - not so easy. But I keep trying!

I read about this crazy vegan recipe on Kelsey's blog a while ago but didn't trust my blender to do the job. (Why is it crazy, you ask? Because it's macaroni and cheese without the (wait for it) cheese!) So I did what any adult would: borrowed my parents' blender, hah. Vegan Macaroni and Cheese promised to be a creamy, cheesy substitute for the traditional stuff, so I was eager to taste it!
The recipe did not disappoint. :) It's weird how creamy and cheesy it tastes when you know there's no cheese in it! (kinda like eating that green ketchup back in 2001) Serve it with a side of veggies or a salad, and you have a tasty, satisfying, completely vegan meal.

I'll admit, the prep for this recipe seemed a little intimidating - but it all came together easily. I used a fairly small food processor without a problem:

Are you ready for this ingredients list?

Vegan Macaroni and Cheese

• 3  1/2 cups nondairy milk (I used almond)
• 3 tablespoons cornstarch

• 1/2 cup oil
• 1 cup raw cashews
• 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
• 2 teaspoons onion powder
• 1 teaspoon garlic powder
• 2 teaspoons pepper

• 1/4 cup miso paste
• 1 tablespoon vinegar (or 2 tablespoons lemon juice)

• 12 - 16 ounces pasta
• 1/2 cup bread crumbs (I used panko)

• 1 -2 teaspoons Italian seasoning


Instructions
In a saucepan, combine the milk, cornstarch, and oil, and bring to a simmer over high heat. Turn the heat down to medium low; cover and simmer for about 10 minutes, until the sauce thickens.

Meanwhile, grind the cashews in the food processor. Add the nutritional yeast, onion powder, pepper, and garlic powder, and pulse to blend the spices.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Pour the milk mixture, spice mixture, miso paste, and vinegar into a blender. Blend until smooth. Put the raw pasta in a 9x13 baking dish and pour the creamy sauce over the top. Make sure all the pasta is covered. Bake for 20 minutes.

While it's baking, combine the bread crumbs and Italian seasoning. Remove from oven, top with bread crumbs, then bake for an additional 15 - 25 minutes, until the top is golden brown and crisp. Enjoy!


2 comments:

  1. I'll admit, the words vegan and cheese in the same title tend to scare me. I have had some seriously bad experiences with vegan cheese! This recipe looks like something I could handle though. Healthy yet creamy, yum!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, I've made some recipes that were total duds and scared me off of making similar ones . . it's too bad I can't bring you a sample.

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