I love cheesy, gooey macaroni and cheese. And I’ve been experimenting for a couple of years now with various vegan mac and cheese recipes to recreate that cheesy, gooey goodness for my son, which has lead to one disappointment after another. At best the results were edible but tasted more like pasta with salad dressing. I’m not going to get into the details of the ‘worst’.
But I have not given up, and I just tried a new recipe based on that one with the nifty looking video that is all over Facebook, and have to say it turned out pretty great.
I’ll be completely honest with you – no matter what your friends say when they share the video, no, it doesn’t taste exactly like real cheese, just like it was not blessed by unicorns. But it is yummy, and creamy, and my son (who has no idea what cheese tastes like and hates sauce on his pasta) was happy to eat it, so I am calling it a success!
It’s pretty easy to make too, which is a big bonus in my books. What do you need? 2 large yellow potatoes (or 8-10 small ones), one large carrot (or two medium), a small onion, some seasoning (onion and garlic powder, paprika, salt), 1 tbsp of nutritional yeast, 1/2 a cup of cashews and 2.5-3 cups of water.
Peel and chop the potatoes and carrot(s). Boil the potatoes for 2 minutes, then add the carrot and onion (cut in quarters) and continue to boil for another 7-10 minutes until the potatoes are tender. In the meantime, prep your pasta and drain and set aside when it is ready. Remove the vegetables with a slotted spoon and let cool a minute or two. Set the pot with its water to the side (you’ll need it!).
In a blender or food processor blend the cashews, vegetables, seasoning and the vegetable water until you have a creamy, smooth cheese-like sauce. Pour the sauce over your pasta and serve warm.
This cheese sauce would also be a great dipping sauce for nachos and can easily be upgraded to be more picante.
Here’s the recipe so you can give it a try!
- 2 large white potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
- 2.5 cups water
- ½ cup cashews
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 box (500g) pasta of your choice
- In a small pot bring the water to a boil and add the potatoes.
- Let them boil 2 minutes and then add the carrot and onion.
- Continue to boil 7 minutes, or until the potatoes and carrot are soft.
- In the meantime, in a larger pot prepare your pasta and when ready drain and set aside.
- Remove the vegetables with a slotted spoon and let cool. Do not discard the water.
- In a blender or food processor, blend the cashews, veggies, vegetable water, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, nutritional yeast and salt, until creamy and uniform in colour and texture.
- Pour the sauce over your pasta and serve warm.