Macaroni & cheese and I used to be best friends for so many years especially while I was a little girl, though I took a several year hiatus during my more recent strict raw vegan years. Now I’m more flexible and have decided it’s time to have a healthy style version of this comfort food that I could give to my nutrition clients. I’ve been teaching private cooking retreats a lot lately and often times women will have kids & a husband back home, and this amazing mama wants to prepare food for them that is healthy and still makes them happy! The pic below is one I took from a retreat I held at my home last weekend – my client brought it home for her kiddos and they went wild for it! That’s great news .. and in other stellar news, it’s not just for kids 😉
This recipe was inspired by a few I found online and ideas from friends who had their own delicious versions. I give credit to the “Oh She Glows” blog for her creativity – the blogger has excellent dairy-free recipes and the mac n’ cheese was one that was shared with me which inspired my version of this recipe below! Give thanks.
VEGAN MAC & CHEESE W/ BUTTERNUT SQUASH
– all ingredients should be organic
1 butternut squash, peeled & chopped
1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil (or Herbal Infused Coconut Beauty Oil)
3/4 cup homemade almond or hemp seed milk
1 tablespoon arrowroot powder (found in bulk bins)
6 tablespoons nutritional yeast
2 teaspoon Dijon or yellow mustard (homemade or store bought)
Fresh chopped garlic (1-3 cloves) & yellow onion (1-2 tablespoons)
1/2 teaspoon high quality sea salt
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 freshly squeezed lemon
Black pepper to taste
OPTIONAL: 1/4 teaspoon Goji Joy (goji berry extract)
1. Coat the chopped butternut squash lightly with the Herbal Infused Coconut Beauty Oil (or coconut oil on its’ own) & a few pinches of sea salt and bake for 40-45 minutes.
2. In a pot on the stove, add 1 tablespoon Herbal Infused Coconut Beauty Oil over low heat. In a bowl, whisk together your homemade almond or hemp milk with arrowroot powder. Add this to your pot and whisk. Stir in the rest of your ingredients (nutritional yeast, mustard, garlic & onion, turmeric, lemon, Goji Joy, sea salt & pepper) and whisk lightly over low heat until it thickens.
3. Cook your gluten-free pasta (organic quinoa + organic corn pasta is great) according to package instructions.
4. Blend 1 cup cooked butternut squash (after it’s cooled enough to add to your blender) with the cheese sauce you’ve made to mix together and make creamy. Pour over your pasta back in the pot and heat on the stove for another couple minutes so you can serve it warm. Add chopped raw or steamed veggies & dress this dish up with some fun color!
For a fun variation, take the cheesy sauce and mix it with organic raw or steamed cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, kale) and chopped butternut squash or yams. Add a little bit of gluten-free pasta at the bottom of the bowl if you want! The butternut squash – in my opinion – is what makes this dish beyond epic. Squash & yams feel like food that was made for a woman. Enjoy my friends! Get the ingredients together and make this for your family asap.. – take a photo & post to my Facebook page so I can see your creation!