Monday, August 12, 2013

Pantry Mac & Cheeze

Sometimes when I get food cravings, I get cranky. I tend to crave things I can't really eat (i.e. mac and cheese, pizza, grilled cheese). I have pretty much ditched vegan cheese all together due to its lack of nutrition and high price, so I have had to make substitutes for cheese when one of these cravings come up. And instead of making some complicated vegan cheese recipe, I decided to "find the easy way out" by using pantry ingredients instead.

So after searching the grocery store for boxed vegan GF mac and cheese, I was disappointed. But I went home and declared: This can't be that hard. I threw together things I always have on hand and this is the result. Feel free to use any spices you love or veggies! I definitely would've added kale or zucchini, but I just wanted cheezy noodles. This recipe also uses only ONE pot which is kind of awesome. It takes the same amount of effort as boxed mac and cheeze (except its not!).

Pantry Mac & Cheeze

  • 1 box GF elbows
  • 1/2-3/4 C almond milk
  • 1/4-1/3 C nutritional yeast
  • 2 T earth balance vegan butter
  • paprika
  • cayenne pepper
  • dried thyme
  • Italian seasoning
  • garlic powder or minced garlic cloves
  • onion powder or minced onion
  • optional add-ins: vegan cheese, minced jalapenos, chopped kale/other vegetables, etc.
  1. Put on a pot of water to boil for your noodles. Cook according to package directions, then drain. If you're going to steam vegetables for your mac and cheese, add them in the last few minutes of cooking the noodles and drain everything together.
  2. Put your noodle pot back on the stove on medium-high heat. Add vegan milk (less for thicker sauce, more for a thinner sauce), nutritional yeast (same option as vegan milk), butter, spices, and any other add-ins (minus vegetables) that you want. Whisk everything together.
  3. Bring to a slight boil, taste for seasonings and adjust as needed. 
  4. Add your noodles (and vegetables if you cooked some) to the pot with the sauce. Toss together and heat through. 
  5. Enjoy your cheaper, easier mac and cheese!

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