Gluten free and vegan baked mac and cheese with a healthy cauliflower cheese sauce!
For the mac and cheese sauce:
- 2 tbsp ghee, butter, or vegan butter
- 1/2 of a yellow or white onion, finely diced
- 3 large cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 head of cauliflower, roughly chopped
- 1 cup low sodium vegetable broth
- 2–3 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1.5 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- Plain unsweetened dairy free milk as needed, up to 1/3 cup
For the pasta:
- 1 lb gluten free spiral or penne pasta (sub regular if gf not necessary)
- ~1/4 cup cracker crumbs (measure after crushing), I use these
- 4 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves only
- Preheat oven to 350°F and set out a medium baking dish.
- Start by making the sauce. Heat a heavy bottom pot over medium heat. Once hot, add ghee or butter and stir in onions. Allow to cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in minced garlic and allow to cook for about 30 seconds, then stir in cauliflower.
- Add the vegetable broth, nutritional yeast, sea salt, and pepper to the pot and give everything a good stir. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until cauliflower is fork tender, about 10-12 minutes.
- Meanwhile, cook your pasta to al dente; about 3 minutes less than suggested on box, for me this was 5 minutes. Be sure not to overcook!
- When cauliflower is soft, remove from heat and allow to cool for a couple of minutes. Carefully add everything from the pot for the sauce to a blender and blend until smooth.
- Mix the sauce with the pasta in your baking dish, adding dairy free milk as needed to thin the sauce to desired consistency, up to 1/3 cup.
- Sprinkle crushed crackers over the top and thyme leaves, then bake for 15 minutes. Broil for 1-3 minutes to crisp the crackers, but be careful not to burn. Serve and enjoy!