Vegan Mac n' Chili
In case you missed it on Instagram, IT’S FALL NOW and we’re equally excited. Inspired by the coziness of the season (even though NYC is still oscillating between 80 and 60 degrees), we wanted to make something warm and homey, so the only right answer was mac & cheese.
We’ve also kind of been scared to make vegan m&c in the past, worrying that it wouldn’t be as wonderful as the original. While literally nothing in the world is better than orange finger tips from a Kraft packet or that crispy layer of penne on the top of the pan that only your mom knows how to make, this recipe really held it’s own. The not-straight-mac-and-cheese-ness of the dish helps calm our nostalgia as well — adding chili elements like diced tomatoes, garlic, white beans and green lentils gives it a healthy heartiness that makes this the most guilt-less of comfort food.
So, grab a sweater and a bowl and belly up to this amazing meal as you watch the Giants lose to the Panthers by two points after a SIXTY THREE YARD field goal the final second of Sunday’s game. But at least there’s cheese.
4 cups water
28 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
15 oz can white beans, drained
1 yellow onion, diced
1 cup cooked green lentils
3 tsp chili powder
3 tbsp garlic, minced
s&p to taste
1 tsp paprika
4 cups uncooked elbow macaroni (we used Ancient Harvest gluten free)
2 tsp olive oil
2 cups Macadamia Cheese Sauce (see below)
Green onion, chopped, to top
Macadamia Cheese Sauce
2 cups raw macadamia nuts, boiled in hot water for 30 minutes
2 cups water
1 cup nutritional yeast
1 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp salt, to taste
2 tsp garlic powder
Put olive oil in the bottom of a large pot and heat to medium-low. Cook the diced onions, garlic and spices, for a few minutes then and the rest of the ingredients except the macaroni and the Macadamia Cheese Sauce. Cook on med-low for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, make the cheese sauce. Drain and rinse mac nuts. Add them to a blender with the rest of the ingredients. Blend like crazy until all graininess is gone and it’s super smooth.
Add the macaroni to the pot now, and cook for another 15 minutes, until the pasta is done.
Pour 1/2 of cheese sauce into pot and stir well. VOILA MAC + CHEESE! Add the rest for serving as desired.
Garnish with paprika and chopped green onions and serve. Also makes great leftovers!
P.S. To see the recipe live, check out the Mac n’ Chili highlight on our Instagram.
P.P.S. Recipe adapted from Veggies Don’t Bite!