Macaroni & Cheese

(Vegan) Macaroni & Cheese by Jessie May

I grew up with macaroni and cheese being one of my major food groups. It was what I would request for dinner most of the time ;). But instead of reaching for a box nowadays, we make this version and have deemed it worthy of sharing with even the most diehard mac’n’cheese fans. We love ours with broccoli, but you can leave it out for a more classic result too. I hope you enjoy our take on this beloved meal :) stay cozy this winter!

x Jessie

Serves 4 to 6.

cheese sauce
1 cup of chopped carrots
2 cups cooked chickpeas
1/4 to 1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tbsp dijon mustard
2 cups plain, unsweetened plant milk
sea salt to taste

8 to 10 ounces of elbow pasta
4 cups of broccoli florets

Boil your chosen elbow pasta according to the package’s instructions.

Add the broccoli florets to the boiling water at the same time as the pasta to save a dish (the broccoli breaks down more when cooked this way, as pictured above) or steam the broccoli in a separate pot on the stove to retain a few more nutrients and keep the florets in tact when serving.

Steam the carrots and cooked chickpeas in a pot on the stove until the carrots are soft.

Place the carrots, chickpeas, garlic powder, apple cider vinegar, smoked paprika, cumin, and dijon mustard in an upright blender. Salt to taste (start around 1/2 teaspoon), add plenty of freshly ground black pepper, and 2 cups of plain plant milk. Puree on high until smooth.

Taste. How’s the saltiness and tang? If it needs any more tang, add an extra teaspoon of apple cider vinegar. If the sauce is too thick, add small amounts of additional plant milk to thin (keep in mind the wet pasta will thin it out a bit too).

Drain the cooked pasta, toss with the “cheese” sauce and steamed broccoli florets. Serve right away.

Store any leftover sauce (if not cooking the full amount of pasta at first) in an airtight container in the fridge and use within one week. Store leftover pasta that has been tossed with the sauce and broccoli in a glass container to reheat during the week for a quick meal.