Ok full disclosure…this no cheese thing is a struggle. I’ll admit there are two things I’m likely give in to; the first being pizza and the second being mac and cheese. I’M WEAK! But I mean let’s be real. There aren’t that many good vegan cheeses out there. However, there are few exceptions to that statement. I just discovered Punk Rawk Labs Nacho Cheese and Miyoko’s Creamery VeganMozz. They are delicious. Side note: I’ve been playing around with a cheese pizza recipe using VeganMozz and I promise once I get it locked down I will share it with you all. But this isn’t a cheese pizza post my friends. THIS…this is a mac and cheese post. Now honestly I have never been a big mac and cheese person. We didn’t grow up on it. It might show up on rare occasions during holidays but for the most part our holiday spread included rice and peas, potato salad, stuffing and fried plantain. So you know whenever I visited friends whose mom's made mac and cheese that was my number one indulgence.
SO! Now let me remind back to last week when I went to a restaurant with some of my girls and I broke down and ordered the mac and cheese. I’m not going to lie, it was sooo good BUT I thought to myself, “Ciara you need to do better”. So that got my wheels turning and I decided to go back to the kitchen and try AGAIN to make the perfect vegan mac and cheese. I first started when I went to a vegan restaurant in DC and they had the most amazing mac and cheese. Ever since then I have tested, and tested, and tested many recipes. I’ve tried a recipe with raw cashews. I’ve tried it with tofu. I tried a recipe with both. All in an effort to emulate the mac and cheese I had at this restaurant. I finally settled on this recipe and although I haven’t necessarily been able to copy it, I think my version is just as good if not better. This recipe is great for those who are trying to stick to a plant based diet as well as those who just love a good mac and cheese.
Not Your Mom's Mac & "Cheese"
- 1 16 oz. package dry pasta
1 ½ cup almond milk
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 ½ cup nutritional yeast
12 oz. firm tofu
2 garlic cloves, grated
1 tbsp paprika
1/2 tsp dry mustard (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Bring salted water to a boil. Add macaroni and boil about 7-9 minutes or until al dente.
- While pasta is cooking, place all ingredients into a high power blender until smooth and creamy. Add salt to taste.
- Once the macaroni is finished cooking, drain and and add to large bowl. Pour half of the “cheese” mixture bowl and combine until pasta is coated. Add pasta to a baking dish and pour the remaining amount on the top of pasta.
Bake for 15 minutes or until the top of the mac and “cheese” is slightly browned on top.*
*Baking is completely optional. You can serve this dish without baking if you like your mac and cheese on the creamy side you can serve immediately. If you prefer the texture to be a little more firm (like I do) then throw it in the oven.
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