CLASSIC PLANT-BASED MAC & CHEESE
This is my family's favorite plant-based comfort food that I have ever made for them. It can easily be customized to whatever you have on hand and is the perfect addition to your holiday feast! This can be made fully "Whole Food, Plant-Based" and more nutrient rich by using a whole wheat pasta or brown rice/ chickpea version. Or it can be made with regular white pasta to give you that authentic feel.
While this is no traditional roux, shredded cheese, and butter Mac & Cheese this is a creamy comfort food casserole packed with nutrient dense veggies. While the first kind of Mac & Cheese is delicious and definitely has a time and a place, this one can be enjoyed regularly as a part of a balanced plant-based diet.
PLANT-BASED MAC & CHEESE RECIPE
Time: 1 hour
Yield: 8 servings
1 recipe of my "Plant-Based Cheese Sauce"
1 box of pasta of choice
Homemade Bread Crumbs
3 slices of bread of choice, preferable stale (I like using sourdough or a sprouted bread)
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion granules
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp dried oregano
*Optional Add ins
1/2 onion, very thinly sliced moons
1 large heirloom tomato, thin slices
2 cups lightly steamed broccoli
1 cup of peas
First, if you have not done so already make one batch of my "Plant-Based Cheese Sauce"
Next preheat your oven to 350F and prepare your pasta according to box instructions.
If you are going to use any of the optional add-ins prepare them at this time.
To make the bread crumbs toast your bread till golden brown (if your bread is already stale, skip this step). Then pulse in a food processor with remaining ingredients for the bread crumbs.
Once pasta is finished cooking add to a casserole dish or deep cast iron skillet and top with the cheese sauce. Stir till all of the pasta is well coated. You may have some leftover cheese sauce so do not add all at once. Once the pasta is coated and is nice and creamy you are most likely all set. Try not to make it too soupy by adding all of the cheese sauce at once.
If you are using the broccoli, thinly sliced onions, or peas stir them in here. If you are using the tomatoes I like to add them in a thin layer on the top of the casserole.
Next sprinkle over your breadcrumb topping in an even layer. (If you used the tomatoes then just sprinkle it right over them)
Bake covered for 30 minutes. Then bake uncovered for 10-15 minutes or until top is golden brown.
Check out my PUMPKIN MAC & CHEESE Recipe shown above by clicking here!