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an overhead shot of a bowl of white bean Mac and cheese on a blue backdrop

Vegan White Bean Mac and Cheese with Broccoli and Sun-Dried Tomatoes


  • Author: Allison
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This Vegan White Bean Mac and Cheese with Broccoli and Sun-Dried Tomatoes is a great alternative to nut-based vegan cheese sauces that are typically used in vegan mac and cheese. This creamy white bean sauce is cheesy-tasting, thanks to the nutritional yeast and lemon juice, and perfect tossed with macaroni, broccoli, and sun-dried tomatoes. It’s great for both stovetop and baked mac and cheese!


Ingredients

Scale

Vegan White Bean “Cheese” Sauce

  • 3 cups cooked white beans (navy, great northern, or cannellini all work)
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon vegan Worcestershire sauce (I like Wizard’s brand)
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk, plus more as needed to thin

Vegetables

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • Couple pinches fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1/3 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes (oil drained off before measuring)
  • 4 heaping cups broccoli florets or chopped kale (or a combination of the two)
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen shelled green peas (optional)
  • 1/2 cup cashew-hemp parmesan, for topping*

Pasta

  • 300 grams uncooked pasta of your choice (I used macaroni, but fusilli, rigatoni, orecchiette, and rotini would also work well.)

For serving

  • Fresh herbs
  • Hot sauce

Instructions

  1. First, make the white bean cheese sauce by blending together the white beans, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, garlic, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, dijon mustard, and non-dairy milk together in a blender or food processor until ultra smooth. The sauce should have a consistency similar to that of a traditional cheese sauce. If too thick, add a couple of tablespoons more non-dairy milk. (I find that a blender works best for this task, but it will work in a food processor if that’s all you have- it just won’t get quite as smooth and creamy.) Pour into a medium saucepan and warm over medium-low heat.
  2. Next, cook the vegetables. Warm the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once warm, add the onion, garlic, and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 6-8 minutes, until lightly browned. Add another pinch of salt, pepper, and chili flakes, followed by the sun-dried tomatoes and broccoli or kale. Cook for about five minutes, stirring occasionally, until the broccoli and kale are bright green. Add the peas and cook just a couple more minutes before removing from the heat.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to directions on the package in a large pot. Drain and return to the pot. Add the vegetables to the pasta, followed by the white bean cheese sauce. Stir to combine.
  4. At this point, you can either serve immediately, or transfer it into a 10-inch cast iron skillet or similarly sized casserole dish, sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the vegan parmesan, and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes to allow the parmesan to brown and the pasta to crisp up a bit. Most recently, I baked mine, but the pasta really absorbed a lot of the sauce during baking, and I think I prefer the stovetop option. But it’s totally up to you!
  5. Top with vegan parmesan, fresh herbs, and hot sauce, and serve.

Notes

*To make the entire recipe nut-free, make the parmesan with raw shelled pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds in place of the cashews. Also, use nut-free plant milk, such as hemp, oat, soy, or rice.

If making ahead, I don’t recommend combining the pasta with the sauce until right before serving; otherwise, the pasta absorbs too much of the sauce and the result isn’t what we’re after.

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Cuisine: Italian American

Keywords: vegan white bean macaroni and cheese