Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheese (with a vegan option)

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I love macaroni and cheese but I don’t love the fat and calories that come along with it.  A few weeks ago one of my friends was telling me about a vegan mac and cheese recipe she made using butternut squash and cashews.   She said it had a good consistency and actually tasted pretty good.

Looking for a great vegan meal? Try this tasty Butternut Mac n Cheese!

I went searching for the recipe because I thought it sounded interesting.  The one I found was a vegan recipe using the squash, cashews, some spices, and pasta water to make the sauce.   I was really concerned how the cashews would be in the sauce.  I thought that it might make it grainy and not very good.

Everything you need to make a delicious Vegan Mac n Cheese!

As I was making the sauce I liked that the butternut squash turned the sauce the color of a cheese sauce so it actually looks like cheese.  The consistency surprisingly wasn’t too bad.   The cashews get ground up and aren’t too grainy.  I added in some spices along with some mustard to give it a little more flavor.

I ended  up serving the sauce two different ways.   The first way was as the recipe is written and then I sprinkled some Parmesan cheese on top of the dish.  The cheese is totally optional and obviously would turn the dish vegetarian instead of vegan.  The other way was to add a half cup of cheese to the sauce and then pour it over the macaroni.

Delicious Vegan Butternut Squash Mac n Cheese

The vegan sauce is good.   It’s not fooling anyone into thinking it’s a cheese sauce but it has good flavor and I’m sure it’s a great vegan substitute.  My only problem with it is that it was a little sweeter then I would have liked from the butternut squash.  When I added the cheese it seemed to be not as sweet and I enjoyed it a lot.

Looking for a tasty Vegan meal? Try this Butternut Squash Mac N Cheese!

Either way this is a delicious macaroni and cheese recipe.  It also has a lot less fat and calories using the squash and cashews instead of cheese.  I was most surprised that the consistency was similiar to that of a cheese sauce.  I would definitely make this as a meal when people who eat vegan come over for dinner.

Looking for a great vegan meal? Try this tasty Butternut Mac n Cheese!

Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheese (with a vegan option)

This macaroni and cheese dish is vegan, dairy free, and totally tasty!
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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Author: Hezzi-D


  • 1 1/2 c. butternut squash peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 16 oz. macaroni
  • 1/4 c. reserved pasta water
  • 1/4 c. raw cashews soaked in water
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 c. cheddar cheese shredded (optional)


  • Place the squash, onion, and garlic in a large pot of water over high heat. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
  • Meanwhile, cook the macaroni according to the package directions. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of pasta water.
  • Place the butternut squash, onion, garlic, cashews, lemon juice, salt, pepper, Dijon, garlic powder, paprika, and nutmeg in a food processor. Process until completely smooth.
  • Add in the reserved pasta water and blend until a sauce has formed. If using the cheese add it in now and blend until smooth.
  • Pour the sauce over top of the cooked macaroni noodles. Mix to coat the noodles and serve hot.
  • bottom of the blender.
  • Add butternut squash sauce to the macaroni noodles and stir, making sure every noodle is covered in sauce. Warm through if needed.


Recipe adapted from Veggie Inspired


I love this creamy Butternut Squash Mac n Cheese...and it's vegan!

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