I love to change-up every recipe I make depending the day or the ingredients that I have on hand. This recipe easily converts to a Gluten-free version by substituting with GF pasta and flour.
When my kids were small I tried many ways to hide vegetables in meals that they loved. Although, I always encouraged them to eat what was placed in front of them, I also understood that trying new things is not always easy for adults, and children are no exception. I now make it with large chunks of cauliflower, but this recipe can be made with finely chopped cauliflower that is almost undetectable after the final cook. Of course, you could omit the cauliflower all together if you want. They never did realize that I added cauliflower, broccoli didn’t fly so well under the radar 😉
- 2 cups (8 oz) dry Macaroni or Pasta noodles (Gluten free noodles can be substituted boiling time will vary)
- 1 -1/2 tsp salt
- 1 – 1/2 cups of almond milk
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 1 tsp of non dairy butter
- 3 Tbsp flour of choice.
- 1 tsp of minced garlic
- 1 Tbsp of whole seed mustard
- 1/2 of a head of Cauliflower cut into bite size pieces (approximately 2 cups) or broccoli, or frozen mixed veggies.
- 1 cup vegan cashew cream cheese
- Optional * 1 cup Plant based mozzarella style cheese
- Optional * 1 cup crushed crackers for crunch
- Season with salt, fresh pepper, * sometimes I add pinch fresh grated nutmeg to taste
Preheat oven to 350° Bake for 20-25 minutes
- Bring a pot 2/3 full of water to a boil. Add 1 1/2 tsp salt
- Cook 8 oz of pasta in a pot of boiling water as per the instructions or until al dente (still firm to the bite but not hard)
- Drain the pasta and set aside
- Cut up half of a cauliflower into small florets
- Blanche for 5 minutes in a pot of boiling water or throw directly into the pot of pasta 5 minutes before finished cooking.
- In a pot or deep saute pan add 1 tbsp of non dairy butter, melt over medium heat
- Add the flour and whisk into the non dairy butter. Let cook for 2-3 minutes whisking constantly. Do not let burn
- Add the mustard and the garlic, whisk in until combined
- Add stock and plant based milk, whisk until thickened
- Stir in the cashew cream cheese until melted and combined
- Season the sauce with salt, and pepper.
- Add pasta and cauliflower still in gently
- Pour into a 2 quart baking dish or pan or your choice.
- Top with the 1/2 of reserved shredded non dairy cheese and/or crackers if using.
- Place in a 350° oven for 20-25 minutes or until the top is golden and bubbly.