Vegan Macaroni and “Cheese”

Vegan Macaroni and “cheese”

I think every vegan chef has their own special version of macaroni and cheese, especially those of us with little ones! This version is largely based off of the one in Vegan Vittles but I’ve tampered with it quite a bit.  My kids like this every bit as much as they used to like the dairy version. Sometimes I make it with beans (as pictured) and sometimes I leave them out. I like to add them because it increases the protein, fiber, iron, and flavor!


  • 2 1/2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni (I used whole wheat)*
  • 3 Tbsp Earth Balance margarine or coconut oil
  • 4 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric (more or less depending on how yellow you want it!)
  • 3 cups plain non-dairy milk**
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • dash black pepper
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 can kidney beans or other beans, drained and rinsed (optional)
  • 1 tsp chili powder (optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare macaroni noodles. Drain and rinse with cool water, and set aside.

While noodles are cooking, melt Earth Balance or coconut oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat.  Add flour and turmeric and stir quickly until combined. Add non-dairy milk, all at once, and stir with a wire whisk until no lumps remain. Continue stirring with a wooden spoon until thickened and bubbly. Cook for 1 minute more and then remove from heat. Add nutritional yeast, salt, and pepper and whisk until smooth and creamy.

Add cooked macaroni noodles to the sauce and mix well. Add beans and chili powder, if desired. Pour into a greased 8 x 8 inch square pan and top with bread crumbs. Bake for about 20 minutes. Enjoy!

* If you’re having trouble finding whole wheat macaroni noodles, try the bulk bin at Fred Meyer.

** I recommend Silk or Organic Valley brands plain soy milk, because they are not too sweet.  I have also made this with plain hemp milk with fantastic results.

12 comments Add yours
  1. Sounds good, I will give this a try. I have been trying various recipes with out a lot of success. My kids were so in love with the NEON orange Kraft stuff… {sigh} Maybe if I dyed this recipe flourescent-cheese colors? hahah…

  2. Ha ha…cool, I hope they like it! Nutritional yeast doesn’t exactly make things taste like cheese, but I like the flavor and my kids have grown to love it. Honestly I was quite surprised with how easily they accepted the substitute!

  3. I use this recipe quite alot also. I switch it up depending on what i have available. I sometimes put in frozen peas or spinach. My two vegan princesses love it. The vegan king likes it also.

  4. This was really good. I just made it for dinner and my 1 and 2 yr olds loved it as did my husband and I. I can’t wait till the next family get together so I can slip this dish in without telling them it’s vegan and watch them rant about how good it is. =)

    I don’t know if you are concerned about this or not, but, I just thought I would let you know. I stopped using Silk because I found out it was manufactured by Dean Foods, which is the leading manufacturer of dairy products. So, even though I wasn’t drinking milk, I was still supporting the leading manufacturer of it.

  5. mac and cheese is probably my most missed food being a vegan, this really does the trick.
    i put extra cayenne pepper in it for add flair.

  6. This recipe was wonderful! I’ve been a vegan for about a year now and constantly crave mac and cheese. I decided to give your recipe a try to see how it turned out. The creamy texture alone satisfied my cravings! My fiance and I loved it! Thanks for the recipe!

  7. This is tasty and satisfying, thank you for sharing it. I decided to try substituting some taco “meat” for the beans. I browned a 12 oz. package of veggie crumbles in a tablespoon or 2 of oil, then added a little water and some taco seasoning–you can find chemical-free recipes on the web. I didn’t use the whole package of veggie crumbles, maybe 1/2 to 2/3, and saved the rest for tacos later. I also skipped the chili powder as the heat from the taco seasoning was enough. I thought it turned out pretty well, although next time I want to try it with the black beans AND taco meat.

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