This Vegan butternut squash mac and Cheese is made with simple ingredients like butternut squash, raw cashews, coconut milk and pasta of your choice. A healthy Mac and Cheese that is gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan and so easy to make.
Craving comfort food and looking for a healthy option at the same time? This Vegan butternut squash mac and cheese has it all.
Smother your favorite pasta in this homemade butternut squash cheese sauce for a healthy take on childhood’s favorite Mac and Cheese!
In this vegan butternut squash cheese sauce, there is no fake cheese, no soy, no preservative or artificial ingredients, just lots of creaminess, and deliciousness.
This butternut squash mac and cheese recipe is perfect for the fall and holiday season.
If you are as obsessed with butternut squash as I am this time of the year (or all year round), you definitely need to give this dish a go.
Is Butternut Squash Cheese Sauce Healthy?
If “SAUCE” is a food group, it is for sure my favorite group and I love making my own healthified versions of sauces and dips.
This Vegan Butternut Squash mac and cheese is one of my staples, and it’s definitely healthy!
- Butternut Squash has so many health benefits. It is rich in vitamins, minerals, packed with antioxidants and fiber which may aid weight loss. If you are interested, you can read more here.
- Cashews are rish in healthy fats and protein
- Nutritional yeast is a great source of protein, B vitamins, and antioxidants. Read more about nutritional yeast here.
- With no actual cheese in this recipe, or cream or butter, it is dairy-free and vegan.
- This recipe is gluten-free and paleo-friendly.
Ingredients needed for butternut squash mac and cheese
- Raw Cashews – Raw cashews are one of my favorite ingredients when it comes to vegan recipes. They provide a creamy and thick texture.
- Butternut Squash – It is one of my favorite squashes. I find ways to enjoy butternut squash all year round, not only during the fall season.
- Nutritional Yeast – Nutritional yeast is often used in vegan cooking to provide cheesy flavor without any dairy.
- Coconut milk – Sweet and creamy, perfect for rich sauces.
- Roasted garlic
- Olive oil
- Lemon juice
- Salt & Black pepper
- Onion powder
How to make easy Vegan Cheese Sauce
This creamy and healthy butternut squash cheese sauce is made in a few simple steps. When everything is prepared, it will only take seconds for you to blend it all together.
Start with soaking the raw cashews in cold filtered water and a pinch of salt overnight (or 6 hours). Or in hot water for 2 hours. Soaking nuts and seeds help to unlock and activate the beneficial ingredients for our absorption. It also makes it easier to digest, and makes the sauce even creamier!
If you are in a time crunch, one of my favorite easy tricks is to use Cashew Butter instead of raw cashews. No soaking needed.
Then, skin and cut the butternut squash into inch-sized cubes and place them together with two cloves of garlic on a sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil. Roast in a preheated oven at 375 F for 25-30 minutes until soft and golden brown. Check frequently on the garlic so it does not burn. You might have to take it out of the oven before the squash is done.
Now, add the roasted butternut squash, roasted garlic, soaked cashews, nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, onion powder, nutmeg, a squeeze of lemon, and coconut milk in a food processor or high-speed blender. Blend until creamy.
Add more or less coconut milk depending on how liquidy you want the vegan cheese sauce to be.
How to Serve Butternut Squash Cheese Sauce
There are so many ways you can use this vegan and paleo cheese sauce. Here are a few of my favorite ways, but be creative!
Vegan Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
My favorite way to eat this creamy vegan cheese sauce is by making mac and cheese. Boil your favorite pasta, I prefer using gluten-free and mix it with this creamy and luscious butternut squash cheese sauce.
I also love adding some peas to my mac and cheese for some extra veggies, color, and protein.
Dairy-Free Vegan Cheese Toast
Use this butternut cheese sauce as a spreadable “cheese” and smudge it on a couple of pieces of toasts.
Paleo Nacho Cheese Sauce
This butternut squash cheese sauce can absolutely be used instead of queso for your nachos. Add some diced fresh tomatoes and pickled jalapenos on top as well. YUM!
How to Store Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese Sauce?
You can store this paleo sauce in an air-tight container in the fridge for 3 – 4 days.
And YES, you can freeze the sauce for up to 2 months.
When you are ready to enjoy it, I recommend thawing it on the counter for a couple of hours before heating it up on the stovetop. However, you can defrost it in the microwave as well. Then add your favorite pasta (cooked) into the sauce. And enjoy!
If you try this creamy vegan cheese sauce recipe, leave me a comment below and let me know how you liked it!
You May also like these other Easy Vegan Recipes:
- 1/2 butternut squash (~1 cup)
- 1/2 cup cashews (soaked)*
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 2 clove garlic
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk **
- 1 half lemon, juiced
- 1/2 tsp - 1 tsp salt (or taste)
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- Preheat the oven to 375 F.
- Skin and cut the butternut squash into inch-sized cubes and place them together with two cloves of garlic on a sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil.
- Roast for 25-30 minutes or until the squash is soft and golden brown. Check frequently on the garlic so it does not burn. You might have to take it out of the oven before the squash is done.
- Add the roasted butternut squash, roasted garlic, soaked cashews, nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, onion powder, nutmeg, a squeeze of lemon, and coconut milk into a food processor or high-speed blender. Blend until creamy.
- Serve with your favorite pasta for a vegan mac and cheese.
* Soak the raw cashews in cold filtered water and a pinch of salt overnight (or 6 hours). Or in hot water for 2 hours. Drain and rinse.
**Add more or less coconut milk depending on how liquidy you want the vegan cheese sauce to be. Start with a small amount of liquid and add more to your preferred consistency.
**Liquid options: My personal favorite is bone broth because it elevates the taste to another level. But if you are vegan, my favorite is canned coconut milk.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 207Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 189mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 3g
The Nutrition Facts above are specific to the ingredients I chose to use for this recipe, which may vary.