Behold! The Mac ‘n’ Cheese

By Trish on September 15, 2011

I’m a big fan of comfort food, and this definitely qualifies. I’ve tried a handful of vegan mac ‘n’ cheese recipes, and haven’t really been impressed. The only one I remotely liked used Daiya Vegan Cheese and the end result tasted (naturally) like Amy’s mac ‘n’ cheese, which you can find in the freezer section.

I like this recipe because it’s from scratch, uses ingredients which you probably have on hand, and is super simple. And any dish that has my picky husband returning to the kitchen for a heaping plate of seconds most definitely has my vote! However, if you have a distaste for nooch, you probably won’t be a fan. Just sayin’.

This vegan macaroni and cheese recipe came to me via my friend Christina, who received it after having it a friend’s wedding. Original source: unknown! But happy to credit where credit is due.

EDIT, Sept. 16: It looks like the recipe came from VegWeb, where it’s titled “Best Vegan Mac and Cheese in the entire world…seriously”. Works for me! Found via a post on Vegan Soapbox from a couple days ago, which listed store-bought options and recipes for macaroni and cheese.

EDIT, Feb. 19, 2012: We discovered that we prefer to use a cashew cream base for this, as it yields a much more flavorful sauce. The original recipe uses firm tofu, so if you’d prefer to go that route, check out the link above. I maintain that my modified version is better, though — and so does my picky husband.


Vegan Macaroni and “Cheese”


  • 20 oz macaroni or other pasta (actually, a 14oz bag is plenty!)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1.5 cups nondairy milk
  • 1.5 cups nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup low-sodium tamari
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika (use the good stuff)
  • 1 tablespoon salt (maybe less if tamari has salt added)
  • 1 rounded tablespoon yellow mustard
  • chopped veggies to your heart’s content!


Cook macaroni until it’s al dente. It will cook a bit more while it’s baked, so just try not to cook it to death in the pot.

While pasta is cooking, combine the water and cashews in a blender and process until creamy. Add the remaining sauce ingredients and process until well-blended and smooth.

Chop up any veggies you’d like to add. Broccoli is a delicious add-in, along with bell peppers.

Combine veggies, pasta, and sauce in a seriously large baking dish (our was our largest Pyrex glass pan, at around 4.5 liters — don’t know the dimensions, but it’s one step up from the 13″ x 9″ pan, and twice as large).

Bake at 375 degrees F for 25-30 minutes. You want it to get a little toasty brown on top, but don’t overcook it too much, as it might get a little dry around the edges.


CM says:

Thanks so much for this! I can’t wait to try it!

serena says:

Yum! Kyle and I both enjoyed the mac n cheese, thanks for posting the recipe. Sometimes to sneak in a little extra nutrition, I like to cook and puree 1/4 of a butternut or kabocha squash and stir it into the cheese sauce.

Speaking of pasta…have you tried the Dashi Noodle Bar? They just opened up and I noticed they have V for vegan items on their menu online…

Trish Haveman says:

Hi Serena! Glad you liked the mac n cheese! We made it again Tuesday night, with penne pasta. Delicious. :-)

I haven’t tried Dashi yet, but I’ve seen things about it on Facebook. I’ll have to add it to my list of places to try. I love that they specifically mention if things can be made vegan or gluten-free. Takes out all the guessing work and means they actually think about that kind of thing! Awesome.

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