If your kids are like mine, they love anything pasta, and they especially love Macaroni and Cheese. I used to make the very best from scratch Mac and Cheese; it was well worth the crazy amount of time it took to grate the cheese, melt it down, mix in the milk and various spices, etc. But we are a dairy free home now, and thus I have been on the lookout for a replacement for some time. After much tweaking and combining of recipes I found from various places, I have concocted what my kids consider the best Mac & Cheese (and I happen to agree) — and it takes a fraction of the time to prepare!! I’d take our current recipe any day over the dairy one I used to make.
With many folks dairy free for various allergy issues, I thought I’d share my recipe with you.
Rockin’ Dairy Free Mac & “Cheese”
[ezcol_1half]1 pound pasta
2c almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)
2t onion powder
2t dry mustard
1t smoked paprika
1t tumeric[/ezcol_1half] [ezcol_1half_end]pinch cayenne
pepper to taste
1/2t garlic powder
2T tahini (optional)
1t yellow miso
1/4 c nutritional yeast
1/4c arrowroot powder[/ezcol_1half_end]
A few comments on ingredients to start. Some of the items here may seem bizarre and totally foreign. If that is the case, I implore you to try the recipe. It is so very worth tracking down these ingredients.
*you can use another non-dairy milk if preferred, although it would alter the flavor of the sauce.
*dry mustard is a a spice vs. prepared mustard you store in the fridge
*use regular paprika if you don’t have smoked. Smoked gives it a unique flavor and is worth getting, but regular will work in a pinch
*Tahini is ground sesame. Most grocery stores carry it. I recommend finding a brand that does not have added oil. I use this brand often. Tahini gives the sauce a creamier texture. It is a high fat food, but very little is used. I always add tahini.
*Miso may be one of those strange food items. I purchase mine at Whole Foods, it lasts forever in the fridge, and goes into every mac & cheese I make. I’ve also used White Miso.
*Nutritional yeast: my local Publix carries this, as does Whole Foods. Ask at your local grocery store, or order from Amazon. It gives the sauce a cheesy taste, without the cheese.
*Arrowroot powder is a thickener. I suspect cornstarch would also work, but I prefer Arrowroot. I often order mind from Nuts.com. They provide great service, and likely carry Nutritional Yeast as well.
Now the process, ready?
- Cook the noodles
- While noodles cook, throw all other ingredients into blender
- blend 20-30 seconds
- dump contents of blender into pot
- heat on medium heat, whisking occasionally, to thicken
- When pasta is done drain and put back into pot
- When sauce is thick, dumb on top of noodles in pot. Mix to combine and serve.
I almost always add broccoli to the dish; sometimes chopped spinach. In the last 4 minutes of cook time for the pasta, dump in the vegetables. Cover the pot to bring back to a boil faster, and finish cooking. No need to steam the veggies separately.
For baked Mac & Cheese, just dump the final product into a casserole dish and sprinkle bread crumbs. Bake 20-25 minutes @350. Serve and enjoy!
Doesn’t get much simpler than that. Now excuse me while I go boil some water…