Vegan Pumpkin Mac & Cheese Bake

By: Suzanne Boothby

You’ll love this lightened up version of mac and cheese featuring a seasonal favorite—pumpkin. You can whip up this tasty sauce with your favorite pasta in about 30 minutes. Feel free to use any kind of pasta you like and you can easily keep this recipe gluten-free by choosing a pasta made from chickpeas, lentils, quinoa or brown rice. Similarly, you can add any greens that you enjoy, though kale and pumpkin pair well together.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil, plus a little extra for the baking sheet
  • ¾ cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 6 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Optional topping: fresh sage, chopped
  • ½ cup almond flour
  • 1 cup kale (or spinach), chopped
  • 1 package pasta (try chickpea, lentil, quinoa or whatever you like)

Directions:

  1. Add coconut oil to a small sauce pot over low-medium heat. In a separate pot, begin to boil water that you will use to cook the pasta.
  2. Then, add the milk, arrowroot powder and garlic powder to the pot and whisk until clumps are gone.
  3. Stir in nutritional yeast, Dijon, salt and pepper and whisk over low heat until thickened for about 5 minutes or so.
  4. Add in 1 cup of canned pumpkin and stir until combined.
  5. Add pasta to boiling water and cook according to instructions on the package.
  6. Drain the pasta and add to a lightly oiled baking sheet. Fold in the pumpkin “cheese” sauce and greens. Top with almond flour.
  7. Bake in the oven uncovered at 350F for 20 minutes.
  8. Serve in bowls or plates and enjoy!

Substitutions:

Coconut milk – almond, soy, cashew milk

Almond flour – gluten-free bread crumbs, vegan parmesan

Pumpkin puree – butternut squash, sweet potato

Kale – spinach, broccoli

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

  • Nutrition per serving:

Yields and nutritional information are estimated and will vary depending on produce size and equipment used.

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Suzanne Boothby

Suzanne Boothby is an author, journalist, writing coach and wellness instigator who has covered everything from spiritual workouts to kale cocktails. She is a freelance wellness writer for Omega Institute and has published stories on Yahoo! Health News, EdibleBrooklyn.com, NBCNews.com, Eatthispoem.com, and more.

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