Baking Sheet Vegan Macaroni & Cheese – 2 Ways

May 19, 2014

We kissed and barked “Good-bye”

Vegan Sheet Pan Mac and Cheese 23-600x

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as my husband left for vacation, 3000+ miles of the open road lay ahead

We decompress in our own ways, do we not?

Alone with his thoughts, a stash of cigars best smoked on sunny days with the windows rolled down.  Omelets with toast served in small-town cafes, dive bars with decent Scotch, nondescript hotel rooms, and movie theaters playing Godzilla on multiple screens

A road trip spanning eight states.  He's going to enjoy treasures such as kids, boats, railroad cars, and abandoned sites whose pictures are found in magazines.

We miss him already

Vegan Mac and Cheese 24-600x

Photo Credit: Tumblr.com

Although we're determined to hold down the fort.  The puppies on guard for anyone looking shifty, the kitties to keep bunnies and  squirrels at bay

Me?

I have plenty to keep me occupied.  I'm beginning the journey toward a formal degree in holistic nutrition.  After finishing the IBNFC Certified Nutrition Coach certification last month, I sought out a program to gain deeper knowledge, wanting an emphasis on the mind/body connection.

The International Organization for Nutritional Consultants proved a wealth of information.  Leading me to apply and be accepted by Hawthorn University, an accredited program in the US, offering classes online.

Hawthorn Books 1-600x

Big boxes filled with textbooks have arrived, with titles including Wellness, Vitamins & Minerals, The World's Healthiest Foods, The Human Body, Nutritional Science.  All good stuff (!)

I'm hoping to finish in the next 18 months

(Much more to come .. )

Baking Sheet Vegan Macaroni & Cheese - 2 Ways - Two distinct Vegan and Gluten-free versions of this comfort food classic .. baked on a sheet pan to maximize the crunch to soft ratio

The day before he left, he fired up the grill and stocked the fridge with my favorite protein for the week.  I stayed by the stove, feeling the urge to cook comfort food.  I tried a couple of recipes I'd been curious about, both offering their spin on Vegan Mac and Cheese

After the 8-week run and giving up dairy (for the most part)  I've taken a much closer look at the alternatives, started experimenting, and have been pleasantly surprised.

The key here is, neither recipe pretends to be made with milk and cheese.  Offering creamy texture and rich flavor, each in their own way.

One combines butternut squash, almond milk, and nutritional yeast, along with Dijon and spices for a deeper flavor.  The other cashew and Brazil nuts, almond milk, and spices.

Baking Sheet Vegan Macaroni & Cheese - 2 Ways - Two distinct Vegan and Gluten-free versions of this comfort food classic .. baked on a sheet pan to maximize the crunch to soft ratio

Both are worth trying, they really are. They're baked on a sheet pan to maximize the crunchy top-coat.

If you're a vegan, these will taste pretty darn cheesy.   If you're a cheese connoisseur, you won't be fooled but will love them anyway.

Enjoy!

xoxo

ps:  If you're also eating gluten-free,  you'll want to accommodate with your brand of breadcrumbs.  Also, our favorite brand of gluten-free pasta is Jovial

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~ Adapted from Oh She Glows

Vegan Mac and Cheese (With Butternut Squash and Nutritional Yeast)

Ingredients

  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed (or 1 ½ - 2 cups frozen)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
  • ¾ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 Tbsp arrowroot powder
  • 6 Tbsp nutritional yeast (or more to taste - more = cheesier)
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • ¾ tsp garlic powder
  • ¾ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¾ Tbsp lemon juice (fresh is best)
  • ½ tsp kosher salt, to taste
  • ¾ tsp ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 (10 oz) package pasta (gluten-free if you’re avoiding gluten)
  • 1 cup bread crumbs (gluten-free if you’re avoiding gluten)

Instructions

  • Roast the Squash
  • Preheat the oven to 425° F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Toss the cubed squash with olive oil, along with a pinch of salt and a couple grinds of black pepper.
  • Roast for 30-40 minutes, or until the squash is fork-tender, flipping once about halfway through. Let cool for at least 10 minutes.
  • Cook the Pasta
  • Cook the pasta according to the package directions; drain
  • Prepare the Cheese Sauce
  • In a saucepan, over medium-low heat, add a Tbsp of olive oil, the almond milk, and arrowroot powder. Whisk until the clumps are gone. (~ 1-2 minutes)
  • Add to the saucepan the remaining ingredients: nutritional yeast, mustard, garlic, lemon, a pinch of salt, and pepper. Whisk continuously, until thickened (~ 5-7 minutes)
  • To a food processor (or blender) add 1 ½ cups of the roasted squash, along with the thickened sauce, and process until smooth.
  • Combine and Bake
  • Combine the cooked pasta and the desired amount of cheese sauce in a bowl.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the macaroni mixture and scatter breadcrumbs evenly over the top.
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until it's golden and the macaroni is bubbling.
  • Let sit 10 minutes before serving
Serves: 4
Nutrition + Show
Rating:
Calories 378
Total Fat 10.8g
Saturated Fat 1.5g
Carbohydrates 58.4g
Fiber 10.5g
Sugars 4.3g
Protein 15.7g
Print This Recipe

 

~ Adapted from Plant-Powered Kitchen

Vegan Macaroni and Cheese (With Nuts and Almond Milk)

Ingredients

Sauce

  • ¾ cup raw cashews, soaked in water for 3-4 hours, to soften; drained
  • ½ cup raw Brazil nuts soaked in water for 3-4 hours, to soften; drained
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice (freshly squeezed is best)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp arrowroot powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ¾ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¾ tsp dry mustard
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ¾ tsp ground black pepper

Bread Crumbs

  • 1 cup bread crumbs (gluten-free if you’re avoiding gluten)
  • 1 (10 oz) package pasta (gluten-free if you’re avoiding gluten)
  • ½ – 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • pinch of salt

Instructions

  • Cook the Pasta
  • Cook pasta al-dente, according to package directions, drain
  • Prepare the Cheese Sauce
  • In a food processor (or blender), add all of the sauce ingredients and process until smooth

Bread Crumb Topping

  • Mix bread crumb toppings in a small bowl
  • Combine and Bake
  • Preheat oven to 425° F
  • Combine the cooked pasta and desired amount of cheese sauce in a bowl.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the macaroni mix and scatter breadcrumbs evenly over the top.
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the top is golden and the macaroni is bubbling. Let sit 10 minutes before serving
Serves: 4
Nutrition + Show
Rating:
Calories 538
Total Fat 32.5g
Saturated Fat 6g
Carbohydrates 52g
Fiber 6g
Sugars 4g
Protein 15.3g
Print This Recipe

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2 Comments

  • Reply Annie May 19, 2014 at 10:27 am

    I have never thought to bake it on a cookie sheet instead of a casserole dish. What a great idea! Pinning!

    • Reply sexyveggie May 19, 2014 at 2:27 pm

      Thanks Annie!

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