Fall is upon us! Without a doubt, fall is my favorite season. I love to bundle up in cozy sweaters and knit socks. I love the cool weather and beautiful fall leaves. But my favorite part is the food – warm soups, stewed apples, and most of all, anything pumpkin or squash-related.
My love for squash began with my mom. I don’t think I even knew what squash was before! But one day, my mom made the best dish: meatloaf and buttery brown sugar squash. She roasted the squash with vegan butter, brown sugar, and pecans. The combination was out of this world. Hold the meatloaf, though 🙂
Since then, I like to incorporate squash into a variety of dishes. This one might be my most creative addition yet: Butternut Squash Mac n Cheese. The squash is the perfect ingredient for a vegan cheese sauce. It gives the sauce body and creaminess without feeling too heavy. It also adds a lovely orange color!
I like to pour a generous heap of the sauce on gluten free pasta. I use the Trader Joe’s Rice and Quinoa Fusilli. But this sauce could be used on many dishes, not just mac n cheese! It would be delicious on nachos, vegetables, or crackers. The options are truly endless. Get your nutritional yeast ready and dive in!
Butternut Squash Mac n Cheese
- 1/2 cup cashews, soaked in boiling water for 30 minutes
- 2 cups butternut squash, cubed
- 2 tbsp cooking water from the squash
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/2 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt (or more to taste)
- 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
- 4 servings gluten free pasta of choice
Chop the butternut squash. Add to a pot and add water so the squash is covered. Heat over high heat until boiling.
Boil the squash for about 10 minutes, or until fork tender.
Add the squash, soaked cashews, water, almond milk, lemon juice, and seasonings to a high speed blender. Blend until smooth and creamy.
Taste the cheese sauce and test the consistency. Add a little more almond milk if the sauce is too thick. Adjust the seasonings as necessary.
Cook the pasta according to package instructions.
Drain the pasta and separate into bowls. Pour the cheese sauce and stir so the noodles are well-coated.
Garnish the mac n cheese with a little extra pepper and paprika. Enjoy! Store any leftover cheese sauce in a container in the fridge for one week.
What is your favorite way to eat squash? Hope you are enjoying your fall days wherever you are 🙂 Bring on the pumpkin spice!