Okay peeps. It’s about to get all hot up in here.
Because we’re taking our vegan cooking to a whole new level. Thus far, we’ve used tempeh for incred Brekkie Sammies, fried tofu in this scrumptious Udon noodle recipe. And now, we’re pulling out the nutritional yeast, tossing it into a simple sauce, and serving up Mac N’ Cheese so good, no one will believe it be vegan.
So, what the hey is nutritional yeast? That’s the first questions flashing through that brilliant brain of yours.
It sounds scary. That’s the first phrase flashing through that brilliant brain of yours.
No probs, baby doll. We got you covered.
Nutritional yeast isn’t like regular yeast. It’s actually a deactivated yeast which is sold in flake form (nab it from the bulk bins of Whole Foods or buy a big tub for about $7 from Lucky Vitamin). When you’re eating a plant-based diet, it’s important to watch for sources of B12, to ensure a proper intake of this vital nutrient. Nutritional yeast lends protein AND is often fortified with vitamin B12, so it’s a great ingredient to add to your vegan toolbox.
But this isn’t a choice about nutrition only. Nay. Nutritional yeast actually dissolves right into recipes and makes them taste like rich, creamy cheddar cheese-laden hunks of goodness.
Think I’m kidding? Oh, you dubious little minx, you.
I am not kidding.
We made mac and cheese tonight, tinted with the secret addition of carrots and orange bell peppers, and my children sang me praises. Little, cheese-ringed-lips rounding themselves around sacred songs that lifted me nigh unto nutritional yeast sainthood.
Think I’m kidding? I wasn’t. Until I remembered that none of the above sentence actually took place.
You clever little cad, you.
Creamy Vegan Mac Cheese
- 2 tablespoons Earth Balance
- 1 garlic clove finely chopped
- 1 ½ tablespoons tahini*
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 ½ tablespoon Braggs aminos**
- 1 ⅓ cup unflavored Soy Milk
- 2 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour***
- ⅓ cup nutritional yeast flakes
- ⅓ cup sliced carrots
- ½ orange bell pepper
- fresh ground pepper
- 1 package macaroni cooked according to package directions then drained
- 1 package of Gardein BBQ skewers heated according to package directions (optional)
- While your macaroni is cooking, melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Toss the garlic into the hot butter, cook for about 1 minute, then whisk in the tamari, dijon mustard, and Braggs. In a small bowl, whisk together the soy milk and flour, then slowly add the milk to your hot saucepan, whisking constantly until the mixture thickens. Whisk in the nutritional yeast flakes.
- Pour this hot sauce mixture into a Vitamix.
- Add the carrots and bell pepper. Puree. Pour immediately over your cooked macaroni noodles. Pepper generously. Add salt, if needed to flavor.
- Serve bowls of mac and cheese topped with a Gardein BBQ chicken skewer.
- ALTERNATE PREPARATION, FOR THOSE WHO DON'T HAVE A VITAMIX: Nab a can of baby food carrots when you're out shopping. Whisk the baby carrot puree into the sauce just after adding the soy milk.
- Ground Sesame Seed Butter. You'll find it near the peanut butter at Whole Foods.
- All purpose seasoning sauce. Found near the soy sauce at Whole Foods.
- Ultra-ground whole wheat flour. Found in the bulk bins at Whole Foods.