Vegan Pumpkin Mac n’ Cheese is creamy, easy, delicious, and healthy! You’ll fool all non-vegans for sure! I brought this to a friend’s Thanksgiving this past weekend and I overheard loads of people saying, “you’d have no idea there wasn’t any cheese in here.” The texture will melt in your mouth for sure. Just another carb to add to your Thanksgiving day menu! This is a vegan game changer… no doubt.
A couple of my sibs are flying in for my vegan T-day. We have gluten free, vegetarian, and vegan amongst us. I am making this Vegan Pumpkin Mac n’ Cheese (with gluten free pasta), a vegan meat loaf, Tofurkey roast, stuffing with ‘sausage’ (homemade of course), mashed potatoes, mushroom gravy, spinach salad with candied pecans, and an apple pie & pumpkin cheese cake for Thanksgiving. I’m serving a vegan spinach and artichoke dip, some sort of hummus, and a vegan sour cream & onion dip for appetizers. They’ll be LOADS of wine and bubbly throughout the day and well into the evening. If any of us make it up the stairs for bed I will die in utter amazement! I’m carbin’ everyone the ‘f’ up and steering us into booze-ville. If we end the night with garage games I’ll be pleasantly surprised; though I won’t be holding my breath.
I didn’t anticipate on shooting this pasta so these are all of the pics I have! Poor light that day, too. I brought this Vegan Pumpkin Mac n’ Cheese, fresh flowers and herbs from my garden, and a bottle of pomegranate mimosas with pom seeds to my friend’s house. She hosted an awesome soiree and it was SO great to see her, as I’ve not seen her since I moved back to OR last year. Thanks for the hospitality, Bethany! 🙂
Happy early T-day to all!
- 16 oz pasta (I used cellentani)
- 1/3 cup raw and unsalted cashews
- 1 small butternut squash - steamed and de-shelled
- 3 Tbl nutritional yeast
- 1/2 a 15 oz can of pumpkin puree
- 1 tsp of thyme
- 1 veggie broth cube (I used the equivalent with Better Than Bouillon Vegetable Broth)
- 1 small onion - diced
- 2 cloves of garlic - diced
- Oil for pan
- Boil water for pasta and cook when ready
- Heat a pan and cook onions for 3 minutes
- Add the garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes ( like mine slightly browned)
- In a high powered blender (I use my Vitamix) add the onion/garlic mix and all other ingredients other than the pasta
- Blend until smooth
- Poor contents of the blender over the drained pasta and mix well (add water if needed)
- Amazing dish for Thanksgiving! Also, I LOVE a good hot sauce on any mac n' cheese. If we are sympatico, go nuts!
- White wine: Chardonnay
- Red wine: Barbera
Creamy & Cheesy Pasta Bake (Vegan) is crazy delicious and easy! Yesterday, I was by myself for about 2 hours, a total rarity in life, and decided to take advantage of this randomly awesome moment and shoot some amazing eats! I drank red wine and danced around the kitchen listening to Billie Holiday. I truly did this. And, it felt sublimely amazing. “You Go to My Head” is one of my all time favorite tunes. I put it on repeat. 😉 I need more of these moments in life for sure! Not to say I don’t love my little guy to the freakin’ moon, but mama needs a break sometimes, too. Some me time. So, yesterday was suh-weet!
This recipe uses an arrabiata sauce (homemade recipe coming soon), and creamy vegan cheese sauce. You can buy a creamy vegan cheese OR you can make it yourself. If you’re looking for a recipe, I used mine from my Creamy Vegan Mac n’ Cheese recipe. I used Lisanatti Almond Mozzarella Cheese and shredded it for the top of the pasta bake. This is a simple but incredibly flavorful recipe!
Side Note: Upon reheating, I put the pasta in a sauce pan on medium, added a Tbl of Tofutti Cream Cheese, dash of garlic powder, flick of the wrist of olive oil, and crisped that baby up! A pasta that actually tasted just as good, if not better, reheated! One for the win! Mangia, my friends. 😉
- 1 lb whole wheat spaghetti
- Approximately 24 oz arrabiata sauce (can sub out for marinara) - a garlicky option is best
- Approximately 24 oz creamy vegan cheese (I used my recipe from my vegan mac n' cheese)
- Approximately 1 C shredded vegan mozzarella (I used Lisanatti)
- Fresh basil to taste (chopped) and for garnish
- Boil pasta and preheat oven to 350f
- On the bottom of an oven safe pan, smear both sauces and add spaghetti
- Top spaghetti with both sauces
- Continue this pattern until pasta has run out
- Top the pasta with more sauce, shredded vegan mozzarella, and fresh chopped basil
- Cover pasta with aluminum foil for 25 minutes. Remove foil for the last 5 minutes
Creamy Vegan Macaroni and Cheese! is my most favorite comfort food. This is a mac n’ cheese recipe for vegans and non-vegans alike. It’s crazy creamy, flavorful, and (drum roll please)… healthy! Don’t let that scary word deter you. I promise you that this kinda health will only bring you happiness. In a mouth watering, drooling, gimme some more, can’t stop won’t stop, this is the food bomb of the year, melt in your mouth, orgasmic kinda shit, kinda way. I know, I’m setting the bar high, but this will deliver. My kiddo, when asked what he wants for dinner, at least 3 days of the week begs me for “vegan macaroni and cheese puhleeeasse, mom!” Even the meat eating, vegan sceptic hubby thinks it’s incredible. His vegan fearing mother is coming for a visit from Scotland soon and he’s asked me to unknowingly feed her loads of yummy vegan food and drop the “V” bomb on her after she’s scarfed it all up. Now, this just feels wrong, but hey, it just might still happen. However, he can drop that dirty lil’ “V” word, not me. Judge us if you will. 😉
Creamy Vegan Macaroni and Cheese! is the perfect lunch or dinner for all walks of life. I recommend saving some of the cheese sauce on the side so that if you actually have left overs the following day you can pour on some new sauce before reheating, otherwise it will be a bit dry like a ‘real’ mac n’ cheese. I used my fabulously beautiful and buttery crooked neck heirloom squash from my garden, however, you can use any yellow squash. That all being said, go get cookin’ into your carb coma! *IMPORTANT: Be sure you have someone to roll you from the table to the bed. This mac n’ cheese don’t mess around, aight? 😉
- 2 1/2- 3 yellow squashed - sliced
- 1 C vegetable broth
- 1/2 C nutritional yeast
- 2 tsp turmeric
- 2-3 Tbl flax seed (optional - but hey, so healthy, why not?!)
- 1 Tbl garlic powder
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 1/3- 1/2 C raw and unsalted cashews
- 1 lb pasta
- Salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 400f and then roast squash until soft (about 25 minutes)
- Meanwhile, boil your choice of pasta and set all other ingredients in a blender (I use my Vitamix)
- When squash is done, place in blender with other ingredients and blend until creamy and smooth
- Pour over pasta and done!
- You will have extra sauce for another round of pasta! Make 2 lbs for a party size. Also, save some sauce if you will have left overs the following day when reheating. It will be too dry without extra sauce when reheating like a 'real' mac n' cheese.
- Beer- American style brown ale
- White wine- Dry riesling
- Red wine- Grenache
Crazy Creamy Pesto (Vegan)! is my new summertime spread. I use it on virtually everything I eat! My garden is overflowing with basil plants so I’m pumpin’ out pesto like it’s going outta style. I’ve been adding all sorts of things to my pesto: arugula, spinach, kale, cashews etc. My girl friends and I went camping recently and one of the ladies had made a pesto pasta salad using an edible lemon essential oil and it was amazing! If you get your hands on some of that tastiness I urge you to throw it into your pesto for a superbly refreshing summertime sauce.
The one thing I remember my father making plenty of every summer was pesto. Every time I’d pop over there for a meal we’d be eating it in some form or another. I, too, am a lover of pesto everything. This summer I’ve been making loads of rotini and farfalle with my Crazy Creamy Pesto (Vegan)! sauce. However, I rub that creamy green goddess sauce on sandbos, wraps, as a dip for veggies (peppers overflowing outta my garden), as a pizza sauce (both myself and G man’s most favorite thing to make together), or with any grain imaginable tossed up with some salad goodies. I think the gist is that you really can’t go wrong with pesto… ever.
Basil, spinach, kale, walnuts (’cause who can afford pine nuts these days?!), cashews (for extra creaminess), lemon, garlic, salt, and voila! Sub any of those salad greens for arugula or another healthy green. Add olive oil or any other oil for a different texture. As always, adapt and create to your tastebuds and whatever it is you have left over in your fridge or garden. Happy summertime eats to you all!
- Large handful of basil leaves (approximately 15-20 large leaves)
- 3/4 cup raw and unsalted cashews
- 1 cup raw and unsalted walnuts
- 1 cup raw spinach leaves
- 1 cup raw kale
- 1-2 Tbl lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic
- salt to taste
- olive oil/water for texture (as per your preference). I add a small bit of water to thin it out during blending and mix in a smidge of olive oil once in bowl.
- Put all ingredients into a blender (minus oil) except water and blend
- Slowly add water according to your desired consistency and blend again
- Sub out spinach or kale for arugula, or add less of the first two and use all three together!
- Add tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, or sauteed mushrooms to liven up a pesto pasta!
- Sauvignon Blanc or Arneis
Sun-dried Tomato and Basil Stuffed Portobello Mushroom is the most delicious stuffed mushroom you’ll ever eat! Easy, vegan, and a flavor explosion in your mouth! I saw this beautifully large fungus on the shelf at Trader Joe’s and knew it was mine. I went home and scoured through the fridge to see what I had left over to stuff this baby with. I decided that I did not want to add rice or any grain, as it was a huge mushroom and I didn’t want it to be too heavy. Plus, I always make my stuffed mushrooms that way and was ready for a change.
I remember the first time anyone had ever introduced me to this delicious mushroom. My mom and my neighbor had decided to knock down the fence we shared in the backyard to rebuild a taller one for more privacy. I was extremely disappointed to say the least because my next door neighbor, Erick, was the love of my thirteen year old life and had been since I was eight. We would always chat over the fence and hang out. I was beyond bummed! Didn’t our parents know what they were doing to us?! Literally building a wall in between our hearts. Okay, so we just walked out our front doors instead, but still, this led to a diminished ability to stalk one another and two bleeding teenage hearts. Years later my sister and his sister said they found one of Erick’s old sneakers that he had saved that had penned in it “I ‘heart’ HR.” My older teenage heart melted. Anyway, I’m sure you’re wondering why in the world I’m sharing my first love tales of woe with you. Being that we were rebuilding this fence into a fortress (hey, I’m allowed some dramatic license here) we temporarily had no fence in between the yards. “Ahhh…” and love hearts filled the air and love stalking each other was easier than ever. Erick’s mom came over often and BBQ’d with us. One day, she brought over a marinated portobello mushroom for the grill and couldn’t believe that my vegetarian self had never had the wonder of such a delicatessen. I was hooked! This was the best thing since, well, Erick! From that point forth, stuffed portobellos were in my top 5 grilled foods.
I hooked this baby up with canellini beans, baked tofu, fresh basil, sun-dried tomatoes, kalamata olives, spinach, and brushed the mushroom in balsamic and olive oil. This was the birth of the BEST and most flavorful mushroom I had ever eaten, and voila, we now have Sun-dried Tomato and Basil Stuffed Portobello Mushroom on this earth. Woo-hoo! Enjoy, folks!
- 1 large portobello mushroom
- Olive to brush the mushroom
- Balsamic vinegar to brush the mushroom
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Dried oregano to taste
- 4-5 basil leaves finely diced
- 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil - julienned
- 1/2 brick of baked tofu diced in small cubes
- 3 Tbl kalamata olives diced finely
- 2 C fresh spinach
- Approximately 1/4 C of cooked white beans
- Preheat oven to 350
- Brush the mushroom with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Add the salt and pepper and brush over the mushroom again
- Wilt the spinach (pan or microwave) and place on the mushroom
- Add white beans and kalamata olives then top with dried oregano
- Add the baked tofu and basil
- Top with the sun-dried tomatoes
- Wrap the portobello (completely covered) in tinfoil and place in oven for approximately 20 minutes
- This would be delicious with feta cheese or parmesan cheese as well
- Red Zinfandel, Shiraz, or Syrah