This is VN’s signature Macaroni & Cheese, and we absolutely couldn’t live without it. Serve it to your omni friends and family members and watch as they convert under the influence of the nutritional yeast-free cheese sauce. We honestly make this recipe at least once a month—it’s just that delicious! Oh, and there’s the added bonus of sneaking in a few veggies, which makes this comfort food more than just a pretty plate. Thank you to the brilliant Allison Rivers Samson for creating this life-changing recipe exclusively for VegNews readers!
What you need:
4 quarts water
1 tablespoon sea salt
8 ounces macaroni
4 slices of bread, torn into large pieces
2 tablespoons + ⅓ cup vegan butter
2 tablespoons shallots, peeled and chopped
1 cup red or yellow potatoes, peeled and chopped
¼ cup carrots, peeled and chopped
⅓ cup onion, peeled and chopped
1 cup water
¼ cup raw cashews
2 teaspoons sea salt
¼ teaspoon garlic, minced
¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon lemon juice, freshly squeezed
¼ teaspoon black pepper
⅛ teaspoon cayenne
¼ teaspoon paprik
What you do:
1. In a large pot, bring the water and salt to a boil. Add macaroni and cook until al dente. In a colander, drain pasta and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
2. In a food processor, make breadcrumbs by pulverizing the bread and 2 tablespoons margarine to a medium-fine texture. Set aside.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a saucepan, add shallots, potatoes, carrots, onion, and water, and bring to a boil. Cover the pan and simmer for 15 minutes, or until vegetables are very soft.
4. In a blender, process the cashews, salt, garlic, ⅓ cup margarine, mustard, lemon juice, black pepper, and cayenne. Add softened vegetables and cooking water to the blender and process until perfectly smooth.
5. In a large bowl, toss the cooked pasta and blended cheese sauce until completely coated. Spread mixture into a 9 x 12 casserole dish, sprinkle with prepared breadcrumbs, and dust with paprika. Bake for 30 minutes or until the cheese sauce is bubbling and the top has turned golden brown.
Photo credit: Hannah Kaminsky