Healthier Mac N Cheese

 I have not met a kid who does not love mac and cheese. It is a comfort food, frugal, and very easy to whip up. Though not everyone is a fan of boxed mac n cheese, its texture as well as the ingredients in it. There are different recipes for macaroni cheese online but our favorite is this Crockpot Mac and Cheese. It is also my go-to potluck recipe. The crockpot recipe uses a can of condensed cheddar cheese soup. If you want to skip this can because you are avoiding condensed soups, the recipe below is a healthier version of macaroni and cheese.


 This recipe uses nutritional yeast, a common staple for vegan kitchens. A species of yeast known as Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Nutritional yeast is the same type of yeast that’s used to bake bread and brew beer.  It can be fortified (with vitamin and minerals..the good stuff) or unfortified (without the good stuff). The fortified nutritional yeast is full of protein, B vitamins, and trace minerals. Aside from its nutty and cheesy flavor, it is so versatile as well! I use it on soups, chowder, cheese recipes (like this vegan parmesan cheese recipe), and stir-fry recipes. If you want to read more about the benefits of nutritional yeast, you can read this article. You can buy nutritional yeast by the pound which is cheaper or buy a small container of it. You can find it at any grocery store such as Trader Joes, Sprouts, Stater Bros, or online such as Amazon (HERE) and Vitacost. I am not an affiliate of Vitacost but I do love Vitacost. Most of my healthy pantry staples are from them. Their customer service is the best and prices are affordable. When I shop at Vitacost (online), Rakuten always offers a cashback. Aside from that, if you do not have a coupon, Rakuten will find the coupon for you and with just one click, you can apply that coupon. Sign- up HERE.







Ingredients:

4 cups elbow macaroni
1/2 cup grass-fed butter (other options: vegan margarine, regular butter stick).
1 cup nutritional yeast 
1/2 cup flour
3 1/2 cups boiling water
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce (other options: tamari, coconut aminos)
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
pinch of turmeric
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 to 1/2 tsp paprika

You will need:

2 pots (for cooking the pasta and sauce)
colander
whisk
casserole dish (optional)


Directions:

Cook the elbow macaroni according to package instructions. once cooked, drain and set aside. I always purchase my nutritional yeast by the pound as it is cheaper. I am lucky enough to live near healthy food stores so this delicious and nutritious yellow stuff is not hard to find. If not you always buy it from Amazon.


While the pasta is cooking, melt the butter on low heat in a separate saucepan. Whisk in the flour.
Whisk the flour until smooth. Slowly whisk in the boiling water, salt, soy sauce, garlic powder, paprika, and turmeric.


Whisk the sauce until it is smooth and all the ingredients were dissolved, thick, and well-incorporated. Now, whisk in the oil along with the nutritional yeast.


Mix the sauce with the pasta. Best when serve warm.



Another option:

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Follow the instructions above. When the sauce is ready, pour 3/4 cup over the pasta on a casserole dish. Pour the remaining sauce over the pasta and sprinkle the top with paprika.



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RECIPES TO TRY:


 Vegan Cheese Nutritional Yeast










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