I eat a lot more mac and cheese style dishes now that I’m vegan. Which is odd, because I did really love cheesy pasta in my pre-gan days. It’s possible I eat it more frequently now because it comes with a lot less calorie-guilt. Or perhaps because my vegan versions are so pantry friendly. Maybe it’s because there are never ending variations of vegan cheesy pastas, so a regular dinner can still feed my love of experimenting. Whatever the reason, what used to be a special occasion dish has become a staple.
This version has macaroni noodles enveloped in a silky plant based sauce. So vibrantly orange you might think it’s fake, and reminiscent in color to a certain boxed mac and cheese, but much healthier and way tastier. Roasted sweet potatoes and garlic are roasted and blended with some umami-packed ingredients. Vegetable broth and miso bring salty, savory flavor to the sauce, and nutritional yeast and vegan parmesan bring a lot of cheesy flavor. An arrowroot starched-based roux thickens and provides stretchiness to the sauce.
This recipe is really weeknight friendly, and makes a lot. Bonus, is that extra veggie goodness hiding in your pasta. Serve with some sautéed greens, or with a kale salad (PS those panfried smokey chickpeas are excellent sprinkled over your bowl of pasta) for a complete meal. Also, can we talk about how wonderful roasted garlic is? Mmm…
Let me know in the comments if you make this dish, or tag me on Instagram!
- Cashews are totally optional in this sauce. They add a little extra richness, but there is plenty of creaminess without.
- You can use either store bought vegan parmesan, or my easy recipe for nut-based parm in the recipe notes below
- If you don’t have arrowroot, try tapioca starch, all purpose flour, oat flour, chickpea flour, or a gluten free all purpose flour blend
*you can substitute all purpose flour or a gluten free flour for the starch if desired *vegan parmesan: Process 1/2 cup pecans, 1/2 cup cashews, 2 cloves garlic, 1 tsp salt, and 3/4 cup nutritional yeast in a food processor until finely ground. Taste and adjust salt or garlic as desired.
Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 378 Protein: 13g
*you can substitute all purpose flour or a gluten free flour for the starch if desired
*vegan parmesan: Process 1/2 cup pecans, 1/2 cup cashews, 2 cloves garlic, 1 tsp salt, and 3/4 cup nutritional yeast in a food processor until finely ground. Taste and adjust salt or garlic as desired.