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24 Sep 2017


By Gracie Carroll

What To Make: Lauren Toyota’s Vegan Mac n’ Cheese

By Edit Seven

vegan mac and cheese recipe

Who doesn’t love good ol’ mac and cheese? It’s delicious and super easy to make that you can pop it in the microwave everytime you get a craving. But healthy it is not! So you may be wondering how vegan food creator and Toronto-local Lauren Toyota included this dish into her cookbook. She made it green and vegan, of course! Lauren bulked up this simple idea with other yummy greens and other ingredients, so you can feel like the epitome of health eating it.

Ready to vegan-up your simple mac and cheese recipe? Keep scrolling to learn how!

Vegan Mac n’ Cheese Recipe

hot for food all day book cover

check out Hot for Food All Day for more easy and simple vegan meals

What You’ll Need:


½ cup water

1 cup unsweetened nondairy milk

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

2 teaspoons tomato paste

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon sea salt

Pinch cayenne pepper (optional)

1 2/3 cups elbow macaroni

¾ cup vegan Cheddar shreds

1 tablespoon vegan butter

ground black pepper, to taste


1 cup frozen or fresh peas

1 batch One-Pot Mac n’ Cheese

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil, divided

1 cup packed mixed greens, coarsely chopped (such as arugula, spinach, baby kale)

2 tablespoons store-bought vegan pesto, plus more for drizzling

1/3 cup salted shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped

What To Do:


In a pot over medium-high heat, add the water and nondairy milk and bring to a low simmer, 5 to 6 minutes, whisking occasionally to prevent burning. The mixture will get foamy.

Turn the heat down slightly to keep the liquid at a low simmer.

Whisk in the nutritional yeast, apple cider vinegar, tomato paste, Dijon, sea salt, and cayenne until well combined.

Add the macaroni and stir.

Cook the mixture over a low simmer, uncovered, for 7 to 8 minutes, until al dente (double-check your pasta’s package directions because the cook time will vary depending on the brand and what the pasta is made from).

Stir the mixture constantly to prevent sticking.

When the pasta is done, the sauce will look a little thin. Take the pot off the heat, and stir in the vegan Cheddar shreds, vegan butter, and black pepper.

Cover the pot for 1 to 2 minutes and then stir with a wooden spoon until the sauce thickens up and the cheese is completely melted.

Serve with extra ground black pepper, if desired, or level up your mac n’ cheese with one of the variations that follow.

To reheat leftovers, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of nondairy milk and heat over medium-low until warmed through.


If using frozen peas, add to a bowl and cover with hot water. Let sit for 3 to 4 minutes and drain well.

To the prepared mac n’ cheese, add the peas, mixed greens, and half the basil. Stir to combine well.

Gently fold in the 2 tablespoons vegan pesto so it ribbons through the mac n’ cheese.

Top each serving with another drizzle of pesto, and sprinkle with the remaining basil and chopped pistachios.




(Excerpted from hot for food all day by Lauren Toyota. Copyright © 2021 by Lauren Toyota. Published by Penguin Canada, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.)

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