Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese with Roasted Veggies
Get ready for the creamiest, coziest, most delicious Vegan Mac and Cheese you’ve ever tried! I don’t know what it is about this luscious combination of steamed cauliflower, cashews and nutritional yeast, but it’s divine. Combined with roasted veggies and protein-packed chickpea pasta, this Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese will be your new favorite meal!
Here’s the deal: If you haven’t tried Vegan Mac and Cheese yet, this is the recipe for you. It’s wildly easy and CRAZY creamy and delicious. I swear, I almost like it more than the real thing. *almost*
There is something seriously magical about cauliflower Mac and Cheese sauce. With the simplest ingredients – cashews, cauliflower, water, garlic, nutritional yeast and some seasonings – you get the most luscious, creamy sauce you can possibly imagine. And it takes less than 5 minutes to make.
It contains protein and tons of Vitamin C. All without the need for any milk or cheese.
It almost defies logic.
Once you’ve made this sauce, you can make it in so many variations! With a little cumin and chipotle, you have a smoky tex-mex sauce. With a little Italian seasoning and extra garlic, you have an alfredo-style sauce. Basically, this could be Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese Endless Ways.
But today, we’re going to stick to the basics: Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese with Roasted Summer Vegetables.
Combine a lightly seasoned sauce with protein and fiber rich Banza chickpea pasta and roasted vegetables (of your choice) for a savory, delicious lunch or dinner that everyone will love.
For the roasted veggies, I suggest using anything that you like. My favorites are peppers, onions, zucchini or summer squash, brussel sprouts or broccoli. Then I always love to add corn for its sweetness and crunch.
And while you’re welcome to use regular pasta, I prefer using Banza pasta especially for meals that don’t already have a ton of protein in the dish.
So instead of having to add in beans, meat or another protein source to make this a balanced, filling meal, I simply swapped out my regular pasta for Banza shells that have nearly 2x as much protein, over 4x as much fiber and nearly 65% fewer carbs!
What You Need to Make the BEST Vegan Mac and Cheese Sauce:
- Nutritional Yeast
To finish it off, you just need whatever mix-ins you like and some protein-packed pasta!
How to Make Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese:
- Mix up your Cauliflower based Mac and Cheese Sauce
- Cook your Banza pasta
- Roast up any mix-ins you like. I suggest Roasted Veggies here!
- Mix it all together and enjoy!
How Long Does Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese Keep In the Fridge?
This Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese keeps for up to 5 days in the refrigerator in an airtight container. It reheats really well in the microwave or on the stovetop. Other gluten-free pastas can get crunchy or hard after sitting for a few days, but these Banza pastas stay soft and delicious even for lunch the next day!
Can I Make this Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese in advance?
You can definitely make the sauce in advance, pour it into an air-tight container and keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. And while the pasta reheats well, it does taste best very fresh!
- 1 cup diced veggies of your choice
- 1/3 cup frozen corn
- 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 1 cup frozen cauliflower florets
- 8 oz Banza Shells (or your favorite chickpea pasta
- 1/4 cup cashews
- 1 cup water
- 1 clove garlic
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- Crushed red pepper optional
Preheat the oven to 400 F. Toss your diced veggies of choice and frozen corn on a sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with a bit of salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes until starting to brown.
Steam the cauliflower florets for 2-3 minutes until tender.
Bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Drain and set aside.
In a high-speed blender, combine the cashews and water. Blend on high for 1 minute. Add in the steamed cauliflower, garlic clove, salt, thyme, mustard and nutritional yeast. Blend on high for another minute until thick and smooth.
Add the roasted veggies and the cauliflower sauce to the pan with the pasta and stir well. Serve with a shake of crushed red pepper, if desired!
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