If you’ve read any of my other blog posts then you’ll have realised by now that I prefer to make things that are quick & easy… this Mac & “Cheese” is a little effort but it really doesn’t take long and there’s usually plenty of leftovers and also extra sauce to put in the freezer for another day so it’s definitely worth it in the long run.
If you have kids, (or adults!) that don’t like eating veggies then this is the perfect recipe for you as there are heaps of veggies in it but they’ll never know they are there and no one needs to tell them!
I’ll get on with the “cheesy” sauce recipe so you don’t have to scroll & scroll for it but make sure you continue reading afterwards…
For the “cheesy” sauce, you need:
2 cups cauliflower florets
2 medium sized carrots, peeled & chopped
3 cups pumpkin, peeled & chopped
1 brown onion, diced
4tbsp plant based milk, I usually use almond
2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup nutritional yeast (read on below the recipe if you’re not sure what this is)
1 tbsp arrowroot (also known as tapioca flour)
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
Put the cauliflower, carrots, onion and pumpkin into a pan of boiling water and let it bubble away until the veggies are cooked through and soft, maybe 15-20 minutes. Take it off the heat, drain it and let it cool for 5 minutes.
Add 2tbsp almond milk, garlic powder and salt to the cooked veggies then you need to purée it… you could use a stick blender or a high power blender or your food processor but make sure it’s nice & smooth.
Add your smooth, pureed veggies back to the pan on a low heat and add the other 2tbsp almond milk, arrowroot, Dijon mustard and the nutritional yeast. Stir until it’s all well combined and heated through.
So, now your delicious, smooth, creamy, “cheesy” sauce is ready. Isn’t it a lovely colour? You would think it had some awful artificial colour in it, like many highly processed cheesy sauces but it’s all natural!
I usually add half the sauce to 500g of cooked macaroni and freeze the rest of the sauce for another day when I might be short of time.
We’re a family of 5, with good appetites and there are always leftovers for lunch the next day from a 500g bag of pasta. It’s a great recipe if you have a large number of mouths to feed.
Our favourite way to eat it is with a drizzle of chilli sauce and some more nutritional yeast sprinkled on top.
Let me explain about nutritional yeast, or “nooch” as we call it. Don’t let the word yeast put you off! It’s a deactivated yeast, so quite different to the yeast you find in breads and baked goods. It has a savoury, cheesy, nutty flavour which is why it’s very popular with people that don’t eat dairy. You could think of it like a dairy free Parmesan! It’s not just for flavour tho, it actually has quite a high nutrition content, hence the name. It’s high in selenium, zinc, folic acid and B vitamins. It’s also gluten free, low fat and high in protein, in fact 2tbsp has over 6g of protein. You can buy it in most health food stores and bulk food stores like Source & Scoop (in Australia).
It’s not expensive but it’s quite addictive, if you like it you’ll be throwing it onto & into anything savoury for extra flavour!
I hope you enjoy eating this Mac & “Cheese”as much as we do. I’ve found it’s a good option for when The Misses have friends over and no one ever asks “where’s the cheese?”
Let me know if you try it!