Kathy’s Macaroni and "Cheese" Casserole

Recipe Categories: 
Recipe Author: 
Kathy Pollard

Warm, gooey, oozy mac n cheese is a dish most of us have grown up with for countless lunches and dinners at home. Who wants to give that up? Well, no need! Enjoy the warm deliciousness with this healthy take on a traditional comfort food.  This is kid-approved in many households and a great potluck dish
 

Ingredients: 
  • 1 package frozen spinach, thawed, or a bunch of fresh leaves cleaned and chopped
  • 12 oz. whole-grain macaroni noodles 

 “Cheese” Sauce:

  • 2 C unsweetened soymilk or other unsweetened plant milk
  • 4 oz. pimento's (1 jar)
  • 1 ½  teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 3 heaping Tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes*
  • ¼  teaspoon garlic
  • ½ teaspoon mustard powder
  • 2 Tablespoon arrowroot (level) (or 1 T cornstarch)
  • ¼  c raw cashews, canned soy beans or canned butter beans
  • Lemon juice from ½ lemon

 

  • ½ C whole-grain bread crumbs (optional)
Instructions: 

Preheat oven to 375°F. 
Place spinach in bottom of a casserole dish.
Cook noodles according to package and dain Place them in the casserole dish over spinach.   .  Sprinkle with whole grain breadcrumbs.  Bake covered for 10 minutes or until bubbly, uncover and bake under broiler for 2 minutes.
Blend cashews, pimento and plant milk in blender until smooth. Add the rest of sauce ingredients. Pour sauce into a saucepan and bring to a low simmer. Cook until thick, stirring constantly. Pour cheese sauce over noodles. Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top if desired.
Sprinkle with breadcrumbs.  Bake covered for 10 minutes or until bubbly; uncover and bake under broiler for 6 minutes or until top is just browned.
Serves: 4-6
For traditional Mac & Cheese – just make the sauce and pour over noodles, or add noodles to sauce and simmer on low for 10 minutes.
 
*Nutritional yeast is a pleasing, yellow, dry flake-like powder that you can get in the health food section of your grocery store, commonly in a can or in bulk.  Added to sauces or stews, it creates a cheesy, rich sauce, or can be used sprinkled on pizza, popcorn or pasta instead of parmesan. 

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