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Recipe by: Angela Tucker

I hope you have all been keeping warm so far this winter! This month I wanted to feature a dish that is an ultimate comfort food. Mac ‘n Cheeze – veganized! Autumn Harvest Mac ‘n Cheeze to be exact. This is not your typical heavy, overly-rich, food-coma type of mac and cheese, so if you are looking for a lighter, healthier version to warm you up one of these cold winter days then give this recipe that I created a try.

The sauce features some yummy veggies that you might still have hanging around your pantry or fridge from this year’s garden or farmer’s market. Putting veggies in the sauce means you actually get around 1.5 servings of vegetables per 1 cup portion.

I must also give credit to the blogger of Oh She Glows that created an amazing Butternut Squash Mac ‘n Cheeze, from who I drew the inspiration to create this recipe. You can see the link to her recipe above.

For some added protein this dish would go well with the roasted chickpeas used in the Vegan Caesar Salad recipe that was posted back in July, using smoked paprika for the spice.

Autumn Harvest Mac ‘n Cheeze

See the inspiration for this recipe courtesy of Oh She Glows by clicking the photo. (Photo credit: OhSheGlows.com)

Ingredients: 

1.5 cups roasted butternut squash (other squash might work as well) *
2 cups chopped carrots
2 medium potatoes, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped
1/2 cup cashews, soaked in water for  a few hours (or cooked for ~20 minutes until soft)
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
2 tsp mustard
2 tbsp lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 tsp smoked paprika, or to taste
375g package of macaroni

Instructions:

  1. *To roast butternut squash: peel a medium butternut squash, chop into pieces, toss in olive oil and roast at 400F for 45 minutes or until soft. You could try skipping this step and just put 1.5-2 cups of raw squash in the pot to cook with the other vegetables (see next step).
  2. Place the carrots, potatoes, garlic, onion, and tomato in a  large pot with 2 cups of water. Cook until vegetables are soft.
  3. Add the roasted squash (if not already in the pot), the nutritional yeast, soaked cashews, mustard, lemon juice, salt, pepper and paprika to the large pot with the rest of the vegetables. Puree with an immersion blender until the mixture is totally smooth. Alternatively, you can let the mixture cool a little and puree in a stand blender.
  4. Cook macaroni according to package directions in a large pot.
  5. Drain macaroni once cooked, and mix with sauce. Taste and adjust the flavourings as needed.

Nutrition Info:
(Per 1 cup serving)

Calories: 330
Fat: 3.5g
Carbohydrate: 45g
Fibre: 6g
Protein: 8g
Sodium: 30mg (if no additional salt added)
Potassium: 570mg
Vitamin A: 225 RAE
Calcium: 15mg
Iron: 2.5mg
Folate: 45mg

(Depending on brand of nutritional yeast used, the recipe may also provide some B Vitamins)

*Nutrition analysis completed using eatracker.ca


Angela Tucker is a Registered Dietitian from rural Manitoba. Angela first became vegan for compassionate reasons but soon realized other ways a vegan lifestyle and plant-based diet positively impacts the planet and health. To learn more about her philosophy on food, visit her blog PrairieSprout. You can also find her on Facebook and Instagram.