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The Best Plant-Based Mac and Cheese {Ever}

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This is the most amazing plant-based mac and cheese recipe! It’s easy to make, it’s super healthy, and it’s so delicious that the whole family will love it!

Everyone loves an amazing baked mac and cheese.

It’s the dish that goes first at every get-together, a frequently-ordered side at busy restaurants, and it’s the one cheat meal your vegan-self always craves.

You can now enjoy the best homemade mac and cheese guilt-free because this plant-based recipe could easily be mistaken for the real thing.

It’s dairy-free, egg-free, and nutritional yeast-free. You can have the macaroni grain-free if you’d like, depending upon the pasta that you choose.

Easy Cashew “Cheese” Sauce

The “cheese” sauce is made from cashews. I’ve tried many different “cheese” sauces, and this one definitely is the tastiest. It has a cheese-like taste and texture, due to the combination of cashews, lemon, and a date. Genius, right?!

If you haven’t made cashew cheese sauce before, it’s super easy.

It simply involves blending up the ingredients in a high-speed blender. You can make the sauce in advance if you are short on time.

The Best Vegan Mac & Cheese made with broccoli and cashew cheese

Healthy, Tasty, & Plant-Based

The baked macaroni and cheese uses half of a head of broccoli, but it tastes as if the broccoli is simply sprinkled throughout. In other words, it’s a great way to get in a lot of broccoli without realizing it.

I highly recommend topping the dish with chickpea breadcrumbs. They are delicious! If you haven’t tried chickpea breadcrumbs yet, you’re missing out.

Vegan Mac and Cheese

Vegan Plant-Based Mac and Cheese



    1. Cook pasta according to directions on box. Drain and set aside.

    2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

    3. Add cooked pasta to a baking dish. Mix in broccoli.

    4. To make the vegan cheese sauce: Add cashews, water, steamed potatoes, salt, onion, garlic powder, lemon, and date into a high speed and blend until smooth.

    5. Pour cheese sauce mixture over the pasta. Stir as needed to combine.

    6. Top with chickpea breadcrumbs (or other gluten free breadcrumbs of choice).

    7. Bake on 375 for about 25 minutes or until broccoli is tender.


I love topping this with Tabanero hot sauce (vinegar-free).

Other gluten-free pasta choices include Banza Chickpea Pasta, Barilla Chickpea Pasta, and Tolerant Organic.

What is vegan cheese sauce made of?

This vegan cheese sauce has a cashew base. It creates a creamy texture. The tangy lemon and sweet date make a nice mild flavor similar to regular cheese. It also has potatoes, salt, and onion. It’s very healthy and perfectly tasty!

What else can you eat with cashew cheese?

This cashew cheese sauce can be substituted in any recipe that has cheese. You can drizzle it over nachos or steamed potatoes. You can dip veggies in it or use it as a salad dressing. It can also serve as a vegan mayo or cracker spread.

What is the best pasta shape to use for macaroni and cheese?

You can use any type of pasta you’d like! In terms of shape, elbows and shells are both good choices for classic macaroni and cheese. Yet, you can be creative (especially if you have kids) and use wagon wheels, alphabet letters, or any other kind of pasta.

What is the best brand for gluten-free healthy pastas?

In terms of brand, there are so many gluten-free and even grain-free pastas available now. My favorite is Jovial Brown Rice Pasta, which is linked above. Yet, you can also use Banza, Barilla, or Tolerant Organic, which are all linked above. Also, Aldi carries a brand called Simply Nature, which is delicious.

What is a good meal with macaroni and cheese?

This baked macaroni and cheese is perfect with a salad or a vegan slaw. It also pairs nicely with other appetizer dishes, such as cauliflower bites and twice-baked potatoes.

This vegan mac and cheese is a perfect dish for busy weeknights, family gatherings, barbeques, and even Thanksgiving dinner. For more Thanksgiving sides, check out my recipe list.

The best plant-based vegan mac and cheese, dairy-free and healthy!

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