Shivani feeds fake cheese to her vegan pals. Now THAT'S friendship. —Sparkitors
In the history of awful weeks, this one was pretty high on the list for me and my friends. Two of them got rejected from top choice colleges, another fell asleep while chewing gum and woke up with it tangled so far into her hair she needed to get a haircut, another two ended up kissing each other and both ended up contracting mono, and the guy I like started dating someone else. So we all convened for the most epic pity party ever. Do you know what awesome people eat at pity parties?
The answer is Mac n’ cheese, y’all. I normally cook for the pickiest common denominator, so this week’s recipe is vegan for my friend Meagan and her boyfriend (yes, Meagan does rhyme with vegan—it’s a built-in mnemonic). All sadness-and-and-weeping-fueled drool aside, this mac n' cheese is really, really ridiculously tasty, which means whether you're sad or happy, you should eat it.
Vegan Mac n’ Cheese
Serves 3 teenagers
8 oz. elbow macaroni
3 cups shredded vegan cheddar cheese (look for Daiya at Whole Foods; it melts and tastes just like cheese)
2 tbsps. vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
2 cups unsweetened milk product (plain soy milk like Silk)
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (it adds the creamy/cheesy flavor that makes mac n’ cheese so good)
¼ tsp. black pepper
¼ tsp. paprika
¼ cup vegan parmesan cheese
½ cup panko bread crumbs
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Cook pasta in boiling water—but for only half of the time listed in the instructions, or it will fall apart during baking. Drain pasta and set aside.
3. In a saucepan, melt butter. Add milk product and half of the cheddar and cook on low-medium heat until melted, stirring frequently. When melted, add pepper, paprika, and nutritional yeast. Pour over the macaroni and mix together.
4. Transfer macaroni to a greased 8 by 8 inch baking pan or casserole dish. Stir in remaining cheddar.
5. Top with bread crumbs and bake for 30 minutes uncovered, or until the cheese is bubbling and top is starting to brown. Remove from oven and top with the parmesan.
6. Let cool until the dish sets so you can serve without dropping cheese all over the floor.
Related post: Cooking with Shivani: Chocolate French Toast