Magical Mac n’ Cheese

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Magical Mac n’ Cheese Recipe

Bowl of penne pasta with vegan cheese sauceWho doesn’t love Mom’s home-made mac n’ cheese? Like countless generations before them, this recipe is one of my kids’ favourites. It’s creamy, delicious and comforting fare.

Most traditional recipes are laden with gluey white flour and greasy saturated fat. Fortunately, my version doesn’t contain any gluten or dairy. Better still, it doesn’t contain any of the soy or fake cheese found in many other plant-based versions.

What makes this dish truly special is the sauce, made from a magical combination of cashews and vegetables. You won’t believe how quick and easy this recipe is! It’s sure to please little people and adults alike. Please let me know how you like it in the comments below.

Magical Mac n' Cheese
Serves 4
The secret to this dish is in the sauce, which is free of dairy, gluten, soy or fake cheese. It's a magical combination of cashews and veggies that give this sauce its voluptuous texture and characteristic colour. made only from whole-foods, plant-based ingredients, this mac n' cheese is sure to please kids and adults alike.
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  1. 1 Tbsp avocado or grapeseed oil
  2. 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  3. 1 medium carrot, sliced
  4. 1 small potato, peeled and chopped
  5. 1 large garlic clove, sliced
  6. 1/3 cup raw cashew pieces
  7. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  8. Freshly ground pepper
  9. 1 1/2 cups water
  10. 1-2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  11. 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
  12. 1/2 tsp stone ground Dijon mustard (optional)
  13. 1 - 454g package gluten free pasta, cooked according to package directions (I like Ancient Grains)
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions and set aside.
  2. Heat oil in medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
  3. Add onion, carrot, potato, garlic and cashews. Saute until vegetables and cashews are slightly golden brown and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Add water to saucepan and simmer, covered, until vegetables are very tender, about 10 minutes.
  5. Transfer mixture to blender and add lemon juice, nutritional yeast and mustard. Blend until sauce is smooth and creamy, adding a little more water if necessary to achieve desired consistency.
  6. Adjust seasoning to taste and pour hot sauce over cooked pasta noodles. Stir to combine over low heat until hot throughout, being careful not to overcook.
  7. Leftover sauce will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  1. Variation: transfer to a baking dish and top with gluten-free breadcrumbs. Bake at 350F for 20-30 minutes until golden brown.
  2. Great tip: This sauce is amazing over steamed broccoli and cauliflower too!
  3. Smoky Variation: Toss a good pinch of smoked paprika into the sauce. Then add some broccoli and cauliflower florets, frozen green peas and diced smoked tofu into the pasta water during the last couple minutes of cooking. Drain the pasta mixture, toss with the sauce, and serve.
Fresh Start Wellness by Calgary Holistic Culinary Nutrition Expert Erin Gionet
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Showing 2 comments
  • Carolynn Riemann

    So the kids really liked this one.

    • Erin Gionet

      I’m so happy to hear that Carolynn! Thanks for letting me know 🙂

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