Easy Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese Recipe

Easy Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese Recipe

Easy Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese Recipe

Once the butternut squash is baked, this meal takes 10 minutes--almost as fast and WAY healthier than the store-bought box of crap. Add a bag of frozen peas and top with Italian bread crumbs for a plant-based meal that qualifies as traditional comfort food.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 1 butternut squash, whole baked
  • 12 ounces pasta (macaroni shapes) look for high protein and fiber varieties
  • 1/4 onion red, yellow or sweet, substitute 2 tsp. powder
  • 1 garlic clove substitute 1 tsp. powder
  • 1 cup nuts, raw cashews, walnuts or almonds
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes optional
  • 2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar substitute any vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1 tsp sea salt

Instructions
 

  • In advance, place a whole butternut squash on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for ~45 minutes. Remove from oven once it starts to brown on top and a knife penetrates easily. Set aside and allow it to cool. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  • Prepare pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse in cold water. [Cook tip: Add ~1 Tbsp. salt to boiling water with pasta to add flavor.]
  • Cut open squash. Use a spoon to remove the seeds. Using a spoon or a peeling knife, strip the squash away from the skin and add to the blender. Do not spend excessive time peeling away every last bit of skin. It's edible and adds fiber. Remove as much as you can and let the blender take care of the rest.
  • Add the remaining ingredients to the blender to make the cheese sauce. Mix on high until creamy and smooth.
  • Pour cheese sauce over the pasta. Mix well and serve.

Notes

My kids love this dish even more when I add a package of frozen peas and top with Italian flavored bread crumbs or croutons.
Sticky Blender Solution: Did you know that your blender will wash itself? Yep. Just fill it 2/3 water and a drop of dish soap. Blend until clean.
Pasta preparation tip: Add ~1 Tbsp. salt to boiling water with pasta to add flavor. Don’t worry—the salt dissolves in the entire pot of water, and the pasta absorbs only a small amount. No chance of salt overload as you drain the majority of it off.

Easy Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese Recipe

Once the butternut squash is baked, this meal takes 10 minutes--almost as fast and WAY healthier than the store-bought box of crap. Add a bag of frozen peas and top with Italian bread crumbs for a plant-based meal that qualifies as traditional comfort food.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 1 butternut squash, whole baked
  • 12 ounces pasta (macaroni shapes) look for high protein and fiber varieties
  • 1/4 onion red, yellow or sweet, substitute 2 tsp. powder
  • 1 garlic clove substitute 1 tsp. powder
  • 1 cup nuts, raw cashews, walnuts or almonds
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes optional
  • 2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar substitute any vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1 tsp sea salt

Instructions
 

  • In advance, place a whole butternut squash on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for ~45 minutes. Remove from oven once it starts to brown on top and a knife penetrates easily. Set aside and allow it to cool. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  • Prepare pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse in cold water. [Cook tip: Add ~1 Tbsp. salt to boiling water with pasta to add flavor.]
  • Cut open squash. Use a spoon to remove the seeds. Using a spoon or a peeling knife, strip the squash away from the skin and add to the blender. Do not spend excessive time peeling away every last bit of skin. It's edible and adds fiber. Remove as much as you can and let the blender take care of the rest.
  • Add the remaining ingredients to the blender to make the cheese sauce. Mix on high until creamy and smooth.
  • Pour cheese sauce over the pasta. Mix well and serve.

Notes

My kids love this dish even more when I add a package of frozen peas and top with Italian flavored bread crumbs or croutons.
Sticky Blender Solution: Did you know that your blender will wash itself? Yep. Just fill it 2/3 water and a drop of dish soap. Blend until clean.
Pasta preparation tip: Add ~1 Tbsp. salt to boiling water with pasta to add flavor. Don’t worry—the salt dissolves in the entire pot of water, and the pasta absorbs only a small amount. No chance of salt overload as you drain the majority of it off.
Buffalo Chickpea Salad

Buffalo Chickpea Salad

Buffalo Chickpea Salad

Quick and easy, delicious, plant-based, whole food dish, high in fiber and protein. Perfect substitute for tuna, egg, or ham salad. Serve on a sandwich, as a side or over a bed of greens as the main course.
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Main Dish, Sides and Snacks
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 15 ounce canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
  • 14 ounces tofu, extra firm drained
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise plant-based, substitute plain yogurt or preferred salad dressing
  • 1/3 cup buffalo sauce (or preferred pepper sauce)
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1 Tbsp. onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 cup celery diced (optional), substitute bell pepper or other crunchy veggie
  • 1/2 red onion finely chopped; substitute green onions

Instructions
 

  • Drain the chick peas and the tofu. In a large bowl, use an immersion blend to mash (use a food processor or hand press with a fork if you don't have a stick blender).
  • Stir in the rest of the ingredients.

Notes

Want a chickpea salad with a little less spice? Try this!

Buffalo Chickpea Salad

Quick and easy, delicious, plant-based, whole food dish, high in fiber and protein. Perfect substitute for tuna, egg, or ham salad. Serve on a sandwich, as a side or over a bed of greens as the main course.
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Main Dish, Sides and Snacks
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 15 ounce canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
  • 14 ounces tofu, extra firm drained
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise plant-based, substitute plain yogurt or preferred salad dressing
  • 1/3 cup buffalo sauce (or preferred pepper sauce)
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1 Tbsp. onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 cup celery diced (optional), substitute bell pepper or other crunchy veggie
  • 1/2 red onion finely chopped; substitute green onions

Instructions
 

  • Drain the chick peas and the tofu. In a large bowl, use an immersion blend to mash (use a food processor or hand press with a fork if you don't have a stick blender).
  • Stir in the rest of the ingredients.

Notes

Want a chickpea salad with a little less spice? Try this!
Chocolate Dessert Hummus

Chocolate Dessert Hummus

Chocolate Dessert Hummus (Vegan Nutella)

Soothe your sweet tooth with this decadent chocolate dessert hummus. It's the vegan version of Nutella, and tastes like brownie batter. Ten grams of protein and seven grams of fiber per serving.
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Servings 5 people

Ingredients
  

  • 13 ounce chickpeas drained
  • 1/4 cup nut butter peanut, almond, cashew, hazelnut, etc.
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup nondairy milk
  • 1-2 Tbsp maple syrup optional, substitute stevia or preferred sweetener
  • dash sea salt optional

Instructions
 

  • Blend the ingredients using a food processor, or high speed or immersion stick blender. Add more (or less) milk and sweetener to texture and taste preference.
  • Serve with fruit, crackers or skip the delivery device and use a spoon.

Notes

Chocolate Dessert Hummus (Vegan Nutella)

Soothe your sweet tooth with this decadent chocolate dessert hummus. It's the vegan version of Nutella, and tastes like brownie batter. Ten grams of protein and seven grams of fiber per serving.
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Servings 5 people

Ingredients
  

  • 13 ounce chickpeas drained
  • 1/4 cup nut butter peanut, almond, cashew, hazelnut, etc.
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup nondairy milk
  • 1-2 Tbsp maple syrup optional, substitute stevia or preferred sweetener
  • dash sea salt optional

Instructions
 

  • Blend the ingredients using a food processor, or high speed or immersion stick blender. Add more (or less) milk and sweetener to texture and taste preference.
  • Serve with fruit, crackers or skip the delivery device and use a spoon.

Notes

Vegan Pesto Recipe

Vegan Pesto Recipe

Vegan Pesto Recipe

Many vegan pesto recipes leave a lot to be desired. It's hard to beat the alternatives loaded with Parmesan and Romano cheese. This comes really close. The yeast flakes provide the pungency of cheese, and the garlic and red onion add layers of umami. If you have also add your own cheese, yogurt or hummus to kick it up a notch. It's good. Enjoy.
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Servings 6

Ingredients
  

  • 3 cups fresh basil ~3 ounces
  • 1/4 cup walnuts substitute pinenuts, almonds or cashews
  • 1/4 cup yeast flakes
  • 3 cloves garlic substitute 1-2 tsp. garlic powder or minced granules
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil optional
  • 1/4 cup red onion substitute 1-2 tsp. onion powder or minced granules
  • 1-2 Medjool dates optional, can also use 1 tsp. honey, maple syrup or other sweetener
  • 1/4 cup vegan yogurt, cheese or hummus optional
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt optional

Instructions
 

  • Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender. Blend until creamy and smooth.

Vegan Pesto Recipe

Many vegan pesto recipes leave a lot to be desired. It's hard to beat the alternatives loaded with Parmesan and Romano cheese. This comes really close. The yeast flakes provide the pungency of cheese, and the garlic and red onion add layers of umami. If you have also add your own cheese, yogurt or hummus to kick it up a notch. It's good. Enjoy.
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Servings 6

Ingredients
  

  • 3 cups fresh basil ~3 ounces
  • 1/4 cup walnuts substitute pinenuts, almonds or cashews
  • 1/4 cup yeast flakes
  • 3 cloves garlic substitute 1-2 tsp. garlic powder or minced granules
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil optional
  • 1/4 cup red onion substitute 1-2 tsp. onion powder or minced granules
  • 1-2 Medjool dates optional, can also use 1 tsp. honey, maple syrup or other sweetener
  • 1/4 cup vegan yogurt, cheese or hummus optional
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt optional

Instructions
 

  • Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender. Blend until creamy and smooth.

How to Cook Beans

How to Cook Beans

How to Cook Beans

Learning how to cook beans gives you access to the cheapest and most delicious source of nutrition. Done correctly, cooking beans requires time, but little effort. This recipe is versatile. Keep it simple or build upon it. Once you know how to cook beans, you can make anything!
Cook Time 2 hrs
Total Time 14 hrs
Course Main Dish
Servings 10 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound beans any variety
  • 2 bay leaves optional
  • 1 piece kombu optional
  • 1 Tbsp. sea salt optional
  • 14 ounce Tomato Sauce substitute 4 cups veggie broth or 4 tsp. veggie bouillon
  • 14 ounce diced tomatoes optional, see Recipe Notes for more options
  • 1 Tbsp. onion powder substitute 1 chopped onion
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder substitute 5 cloves garlic, minced

Instructions
 

  • Soak beans overnight (up to 24 hours). See recipe notes for more information. Drain and rinse.
  • Add beans to a stock pot. Cover with about 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil. Add bay leaves and/or kombu (optional, see recipe notes below). Reduce heat to medium low and cover (but don't seal.) Cook times will vary (see recipe notes). Best to cook when you are home and can periodically check.
  • Reduce heat to simmer, cover (but don't seal), and cook for 30 minutes to 2+ hours (the lower the heat, the longer it takes, but the more tender the bean). Skim froth that forms. When beans are soft (about 3/4 done), add salt. Set timer for 10-15 minute increments. Add more water as necessary to keep beans submerged. When beans are tender, and skins are wrinkly, and they taste perfect, they're done.
  • Once beans are nearly done, increase heat to medium high. Add tomato sauce, tomatoes, onion and garlic. Cook for another 10-15 minutes, until beans are done. Remove bay leaves and kombu.
  • To finish off my beans, I added a dried vegetable and seasoning blend I picked up at a local market that sells Italian products. Scour your own pantry for blends you've purchased and saved for a rainy day. This basic recipe for how to cook beans can serve as a base for anything.

Notes

Beans and Digestion: Soaking improves digestibility and nutrient absorption, and breaks down anti-nutrients like phytic acid and leptins. Furthermore, bay leaves and kombu not only enhance the flavor of beans, but also improve digestibility and add essential minerals. Since I began soaking for 24 hours and adding bay leaves and kombu, the bloating, gas, and stinky "dutch oven" that roasted in our bedroom post legume consumption is a thing of the past. Knowing how to cook beans from scratch has one clear benefit—the "potlicker" broth. Potlicker is vegan bone broth. It retains nutrients and minerals lost during the cooking process, serves as a thickener and is very flavorful.
Cooking Time: Many recipes for how to cook beans give specific cooking times. But how long it takes can't be predicted. Cook times will vary based on the age of your bean (how long it's been sitting on the shelf) and the mineral content of your water. This is why I cook on the stove top (versus crock pot or pressure cooker). Monitoring for doneness prevents overcooking and allows you to get it right every time.  Best to cook when you are home and can periodically check.
Salt: There are a lot of opinions out there for when and if to add salt, and how much to add. Experts are divided and there is lots of conflicting science. I've tested various methods, and adding it towards the end of cooking works best for me. By all means, experiment to find what works for you. Read more . . .
Veggie Broth vs. Bouillon: Store bought organic veggie broth can be very expensive. I use Organic Better than Bouillon Vegetable Base, which allows me to make as little (or as much) as I need without paying $1/cup (it's about $0.20 cents/cup).
Get Creative: What are your favorite flavors? There are so many ways to serve beans. Think about adding BBQ sauce, red onion, and a dark beer. Add veggies (canned, frozen or fresh) and season with your favorite flavors. Go for Mexican, Italian, Asian, or create a fusion of your own design. Check out these bean recipes for more ideas. 

Vegan Black Bean Queso Blanco

 

Simple Spicy Red Beans

 

Cheater Chili

 

Caribbean Beans & Rice

 

How to Cook Beans

Learning how to cook beans gives you access to the cheapest and most delicious source of nutrition. Done correctly, cooking beans requires time, but little effort. This recipe is versatile. Keep it simple or build upon it. Once you know how to cook beans, you can make anything!
Cook Time 2 hrs
Total Time 14 hrs
Course Main Dish
Servings 10 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound beans any variety
  • 2 bay leaves optional
  • 1 piece kombu optional
  • 1 Tbsp. sea salt optional
  • 14 ounce Tomato Sauce substitute 4 cups veggie broth or 4 tsp. veggie bouillon
  • 14 ounce diced tomatoes optional, see Recipe Notes for more options
  • 1 Tbsp. onion powder substitute 1 chopped onion
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder substitute 5 cloves garlic, minced

Instructions
 

  • Soak beans overnight (up to 24 hours). See recipe notes for more information. Drain and rinse.
  • Add beans to a stock pot. Cover with about 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil. Add bay leaves and/or kombu (optional, see recipe notes below). Reduce heat to medium low and cover (but don't seal.) Cook times will vary (see recipe notes). Best to cook when you are home and can periodically check.
  • Reduce heat to simmer, cover (but don't seal), and cook for 30 minutes to 2+ hours (the lower the heat, the longer it takes, but the more tender the bean). Skim froth that forms. When beans are soft (about 3/4 done), add salt. Set timer for 10-15 minute increments. Add more water as necessary to keep beans submerged. When beans are tender, and skins are wrinkly, and they taste perfect, they're done.
  • Once beans are nearly done, increase heat to medium high. Add tomato sauce, tomatoes, onion and garlic. Cook for another 10-15 minutes, until beans are done. Remove bay leaves and kombu.
  • To finish off my beans, I added a dried vegetable and seasoning blend I picked up at a local market that sells Italian products. Scour your own pantry for blends you've purchased and saved for a rainy day. This basic recipe for how to cook beans can serve as a base for anything.

Notes

Beans and Digestion: Soaking improves digestibility and nutrient absorption, and breaks down anti-nutrients like phytic acid and leptins. Furthermore, bay leaves and kombu not only enhance the flavor of beans, but also improve digestibility and add essential minerals. Since I began soaking for 24 hours and adding bay leaves and kombu, the bloating, gas, and stinky "dutch oven" that roasted in our bedroom post legume consumption is a thing of the past. Knowing how to cook beans from scratch has one clear benefit—the "potlicker" broth. Potlicker is vegan bone broth. It retains nutrients and minerals lost during the cooking process, serves as a thickener and is very flavorful.
Cooking Time: Many recipes for how to cook beans give specific cooking times. But how long it takes can't be predicted. Cook times will vary based on the age of your bean (how long it's been sitting on the shelf) and the mineral content of your water. This is why I cook on the stove top (versus crock pot or pressure cooker). Monitoring for doneness prevents overcooking and allows you to get it right every time.  Best to cook when you are home and can periodically check.
Salt: There are a lot of opinions out there for when and if to add salt, and how much to add. Experts are divided and there is lots of conflicting science. I've tested various methods, and adding it towards the end of cooking works best for me. By all means, experiment to find what works for you. Read more . . .
Veggie Broth vs. Bouillon: Store bought organic veggie broth can be very expensive. I use Organic Better than Bouillon Vegetable Base, which allows me to make as little (or as much) as I need without paying $1/cup (it's about $0.20 cents/cup).
Get Creative: What are your favorite flavors? There are so many ways to serve beans. Think about adding BBQ sauce, red onion, and a dark beer. Add veggies (canned, frozen or fresh) and season with your favorite flavors. Go for Mexican, Italian, Asian, or create a fusion of your own design. Check out these bean recipes for more ideas. 

Vegan Black Bean Queso Blanco

 

Simple Spicy Red Beans

 

Cheater Chili

 

Caribbean Beans & Rice

 
Spinach Artichoke Mac & Cheese Recipe

Spinach Artichoke Mac & Cheese Recipe

Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese

Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese is delicious, plant-based comfort food with 17 grams of protein and 9 grams of fiber per serving. Fast, 1-pot prep with pantry and freezer ingredients.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 8 ounces pasta use whatever you have
  • 1 cup cashews see recipe notes for substitution options
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 bag frozen riced cauliflower ~2 cups, substitute can of white beans
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes optional: replace with 1/2 tsp ground mustard and/or a splash of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 red onion substitute 1 Tbsp. onion powder
  • 5 garlic cloves substitute 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 14 ounce artichoke hearts drained
  • 1 bag frozen spinach or 5 cups fresh
  • 14 ounce canned lentils or ~1 3/4 cups cooked
  • 1 cup bread crumbs optional, see notes
  • 1/2 cup vegan cheese optional

Instructions
 

  • If working with frozen cauliflower and spinach, place packages in sink and cover with warm water to thaw.
  • In a large soup pot, bring water to boil for pasta. Optional: when water reaches boiling point, add salt to the water to give pasta flavor (about 1 Tbsp per 8 cups). Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente.
  • Add to the blender the cashews and water (or a substitute as discussed in the recipe notes), riced cauliflower, yeast flakes, onion, garlic and salt. Puree until creamy and smooth. Add the artichoke hearts and pulse into small chunks.
  • Drain the pasta. Keep the pasta in the colander and add spinach to the warm pot. Heat on low until wilted or thawed. Splash with water to avoid sticking.
  • Return pasta to the pot and stir in cream sauce. At this point, it's done and delicious. You can serve as is.
  • Or, preheat broiler. Top with bread crumbs and vegan cheese. Broil a few minutes until bubbly and browning. I did not switch to a casserole dish. Just lowered the oven rack and used the soup pot.

Notes

Pasta: Use whatever you have. I like the high protein and fiber gluten free pastas that have recently come to the market. For this recipe, I used Banza rotini made from chickpeas. 
Pasta preparation tip: Add ~1 Tbsp. salt to boiling water with pasta to add flavor. Don’t worry—the salt dissolves in the entire pot of water, and the pasta absorbs a very small amount. No chance of salt overload as you drain the majority of it off.
No Cashews? If you don't or can't have cashews, you have options. You can use walnuts or almonds, and if tree nuts are a problem, try pumpkin, sunflower or sesame seeds (substitute one cup of nuts or seeds and add with 1 cup of water). Alternatively, you could use a can of white beans, lentils, a block of tofu, or hummus. You could also double the riced cauliflower or add another can of artichoke hearts. Other options that make great cream sauces are potatoes, yellow squash and pumpkin. How much do you add? Replace 1 cup of cashews and 1 cup of water with one ~14 ounce can or the amount needed to generate about 1 3/4 cups of puree.
Breadcrumbs: Got stale bread?--throw that into the blender along with some garlic and onion powder or other seasonings. Bam. Bread crumbs).
Sticky Blender Solution: Did you know that your blender will wash itself? Yep. Just fill it 2/3 water and a drop of dish soap. Blend until clean.
Love mac and cheese? Try my other recipes:

Dairy free, high protein with extra veggies. Kids give this 5 stars!


Vegan Mac & Cheese (Dairy, Gluten and Soy Free)


Macaroni & Cheese (Nut-free version)


Dairy Free Alfredo Sauce

Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese

Spinach Artichoke Mac and Cheese is delicious, plant-based comfort food with 17 grams of protein and 9 grams of fiber per serving. Fast, 1-pot prep with pantry and freezer ingredients.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 8 ounces pasta use whatever you have
  • 1 cup cashews see recipe notes for substitution options
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 bag frozen riced cauliflower ~2 cups, substitute can of white beans
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes optional: replace with 1/2 tsp ground mustard and/or a splash of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 red onion substitute 1 Tbsp. onion powder
  • 5 garlic cloves substitute 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 14 ounce artichoke hearts drained
  • 1 bag frozen spinach or 5 cups fresh
  • 14 ounce canned lentils or ~1 3/4 cups cooked
  • 1 cup bread crumbs optional, see notes
  • 1/2 cup vegan cheese optional

Instructions
 

  • If working with frozen cauliflower and spinach, place packages in sink and cover with warm water to thaw.
  • In a large soup pot, bring water to boil for pasta. Optional: when water reaches boiling point, add salt to the water to give pasta flavor (about 1 Tbsp per 8 cups). Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente.
  • Add to the blender the cashews and water (or a substitute as discussed in the recipe notes), riced cauliflower, yeast flakes, onion, garlic and salt. Puree until creamy and smooth. Add the artichoke hearts and pulse into small chunks.
  • Drain the pasta. Keep the pasta in the colander and add spinach to the warm pot. Heat on low until wilted or thawed. Splash with water to avoid sticking.
  • Return pasta to the pot and stir in cream sauce. At this point, it's done and delicious. You can serve as is.
  • Or, preheat broiler. Top with bread crumbs and vegan cheese. Broil a few minutes until bubbly and browning. I did not switch to a casserole dish. Just lowered the oven rack and used the soup pot.

Notes

Pasta: Use whatever you have. I like the high protein and fiber gluten free pastas that have recently come to the market. For this recipe, I used Banza rotini made from chickpeas. 
Pasta preparation tip: Add ~1 Tbsp. salt to boiling water with pasta to add flavor. Don’t worry—the salt dissolves in the entire pot of water, and the pasta absorbs a very small amount. No chance of salt overload as you drain the majority of it off.
No Cashews? If you don't or can't have cashews, you have options. You can use walnuts or almonds, and if tree nuts are a problem, try pumpkin, sunflower or sesame seeds (substitute one cup of nuts or seeds and add with 1 cup of water). Alternatively, you could use a can of white beans, lentils, a block of tofu, or hummus. You could also double the riced cauliflower or add another can of artichoke hearts. Other options that make great cream sauces are potatoes, yellow squash and pumpkin. How much do you add? Replace 1 cup of cashews and 1 cup of water with one ~14 ounce can or the amount needed to generate about 1 3/4 cups of puree.
Breadcrumbs: Got stale bread?--throw that into the blender along with some garlic and onion powder or other seasonings. Bam. Bread crumbs).
Sticky Blender Solution: Did you know that your blender will wash itself? Yep. Just fill it 2/3 water and a drop of dish soap. Blend until clean.
Love mac and cheese? Try my other recipes:

Dairy free, high protein with extra veggies. Kids give this 5 stars!


Vegan Mac & Cheese (Dairy, Gluten and Soy Free)


Macaroni & Cheese (Nut-free version)


Dairy Free Alfredo Sauce

Vegan Creamed Spinach Recipe

Vegan Creamed Spinach Recipe

Vegan Creamed Spinach Recipe

This rich, vegan creamed spinach has an elegant Steakhouse-style presentation--sans butter, cream and cheese. Plant-based recipes can be as simple and delicious as their artery-clogging counterparts. Easy prep, and done within 10 minutes. Make this with other leafy greens as well, such as swiss chard, mustard, collard or beet greens and kale.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Sides and Snacks
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 14 ounce white beans cannellini, navy, garbanzo or or other
  • 1/4 cup cashews substitute walnut or almonds
  • 1/2 Sweet Onion loosely chopped, substitute 2 tsp. onion powder
  • 2 cloves of garlic substitute 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar substitute lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • pepper to taste
  • dash of nutmeg or red pepper flakes optional
  • 10-15 ounces fresh spinach frozen ok

Instructions
 

  • Blend all ingredients except spinach until creamy and smooth.
  • Transfer cream to a skillet. Turn on low heat. Add spinach by the handfuls, stirring constantly, adding more spinach as each batch wilts. If sticking occurs, either reduce the heat or splash with water. Remove from heat as last batch cooks. If using a cast iron skillet, remove from heat before it's finished as it will continue to cook.
  • Alternately, sauté spinach on low heat in a little water before adding the cream. As the volume decreases, add the cream sauce. Remove from heat.

Notes

Sticky Blender Solution: Did you know that your blender will wash itself? Yep. Just fill it 2/3 water and a drop of dish soap. Blend until clean.
The volume of this dish depends on how you cook the spinach. If you use the second method, or substitute frozen spinach, the spinach is evenly cooked. If significantly reduced, you may need to hold back some of the sauce (or add more spinach). This is why I prefer the first method, as some of the spinach leaves remain large and fresh looking. Cooking in cast iron skillets is a bit "touchy."  but it can work. A stainless steel skillet would be easier. Either way, keep the heat low and stir constantly.

Vegan Creamed Spinach Recipe

This rich, vegan creamed spinach has an elegant Steakhouse-style presentation--sans butter, cream and cheese. Plant-based recipes can be as simple and delicious as their artery-clogging counterparts. Easy prep, and done within 10 minutes. Make this with other leafy greens as well, such as swiss chard, mustard, collard or beet greens and kale.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Sides and Snacks
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 14 ounce white beans cannellini, navy, garbanzo or or other
  • 1/4 cup cashews substitute walnut or almonds
  • 1/2 Sweet Onion loosely chopped, substitute 2 tsp. onion powder
  • 2 cloves of garlic substitute 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar substitute lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • pepper to taste
  • dash of nutmeg or red pepper flakes optional
  • 10-15 ounces fresh spinach frozen ok

Instructions
 

  • Blend all ingredients except spinach until creamy and smooth.
  • Transfer cream to a skillet. Turn on low heat. Add spinach by the handfuls, stirring constantly, adding more spinach as each batch wilts. If sticking occurs, either reduce the heat or splash with water. Remove from heat as last batch cooks. If using a cast iron skillet, remove from heat before it's finished as it will continue to cook.
  • Alternately, sauté spinach on low heat in a little water before adding the cream. As the volume decreases, add the cream sauce. Remove from heat.

Notes

Sticky Blender Solution: Did you know that your blender will wash itself? Yep. Just fill it 2/3 water and a drop of dish soap. Blend until clean.
The volume of this dish depends on how you cook the spinach. If you use the second method, or substitute frozen spinach, the spinach is evenly cooked. If significantly reduced, you may need to hold back some of the sauce (or add more spinach). This is why I prefer the first method, as some of the spinach leaves remain large and fresh looking. Cooking in cast iron skillets is a bit "touchy."  but it can work. A stainless steel skillet would be easier. Either way, keep the heat low and stir constantly.

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