Do you ever make something primarily because you’re excited to try out a new gadget or baking dish? Well, that was the push for me to make this Mac & Cheese dish last week. I love this recipe (adapted from Vegan Yum Yum), in general. After trying several different recipes for Mac & Cheese, this is definitely my favorite. But, I was all the more excited to make it last week because it meant trying out my new colorful Le Creuset ramekins, which I had just picked up at Home Goods.
I’ve made vegan Mac & Cheese sauces where the ingredients don’t really blend together to create that “cheese.” This one is the total opposite. The sauce has depth and textured flavor, but everything comes together in one velvety smooth sauce that delivers the comfort I most often seek from a dish like this. Baked, the sauce on top crisps up around the pasta, but underneath, it remains creamy. This time around, I added some chopped broccoli florets, but I typically rip up some kale and mix it in with the pasta and sauce before baking. The sauce bakes into the nooks and crannies of the kale - so you’re getting this salty bite of a near-kale-chip, in the middle of your mac and cheese. It’s divine.
Baked Vegan Mac & Cheese
- Serves 4
- 15 min prep/20 min bake
- 3 cups, pasta (I like Rotini or Mini-Shells)
- 1 recipe, Cheese Sauce (see below)
- 1 cup, bread crumbs
- Broccoli florets or chopped kale (optional)
Ingredients for "Cheese" Sauce
- 1/3 cup, Earth Balance Margarine
- 1/4 cup, all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon, tahini
- 1 tablespoon, tomato paste
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 1/4 cups, soy milk
- 1/3 cup, nutritional yeast
- Salt, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cook the pasta, according to package directions. Once the pasta is cooked and drained, toss with the cheese sauce and optional broccoli or kale. Transfer to baking dish or ramekins. Top with breadcrumbs, and bake for 20 minutes, until bubbly.
Directions for "Cheese" Sauce
1. Melt the margarine in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and whisk, until it forms a roux.
2. Whisk in the tahini, tomato paste, soy sauce, and lemon juice.
2. Slowly whisk in the soy milk. Add nutritional yeast, salt and pepper, and whisk until the mixture thickens to a desired consistency for cheese sauce.
Like these recommendations, and want more handpicked finds, articles, and recipes, delivered to your inbox every Friday? Subscribe to Food Sense Weekly here.