15 January 2016

Creamy Cauliflower Macaroni Cheese - Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes

Creamy Cauliflower Macaroni Cheese - Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes

I like to bulk out dishes with extra vegetables as often as I can. It's pretty essential when you have a fussy child. I decided to add cauliflower to this creamy macaroni cheese and it was excellent. A good thick sauce with a really cheesey flavour.

Cooper likes cauliflower, but only if it's in a cheese sauce, so adding cauliflower seemed the perfect option. Why not add cauliflower florets to the macaroni cheese you may ask? Why make it into a smooth sauce?

Adding florets would change the texture and sometimes you have to choose your battles, especially when you're already spending time making one dairy cheese sauce and one vegan one. We do mostly eat a vegan diet but Cooper and I still occasionally eat cheese.


Mac and Cheese with a creamy cauliflower cheese sauce. Veggie and vegan options. A quick family recipe that tastes wonderful.


I don't make macaroni cheese very often as I'm aware of how calorific it is, but when I do make it we really enjoy it. The next day we like to eat our leftover macaroni cheese with spicy bean burgers and vegetables. You should try it, it's tasty!

If you're making my vegan version of the sauce, you'll find the alternative ingredients in brackets. I do hope you try this dish and enjoy it as much as we do.



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Creamy Cauliflower Macaroni Cheese
A comforting macaroni dish with a smooth cauliflower and cheese sauce, along with the alternative ingredients for a vegan version.
Ingredients
  • 500g macaroni
  • 1 medium head cauliflower
  • 650 ml milk (soya or nut milk)
  • ½ onion
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 40 g butter (dairy free spread)
  • 45 g plain flour
  • 150 g mature cheddar (or 6 tbsp nutritional yeast, 1 tsp onion granules & 1 tsp garlic powder)
  • 1 tsp wholegrain mustard (or English mustard powder)
  • a pinch of salt
  • a good grinding of black pepper
Instructions
1. Cook the macaroni in plenty of boiling water according to the packet instructions. Don't overcook, it should be al dente.2. Break your cauliflower into florets and steam or boil until tender. 3. Heat the milk with the onion and bay leaves. Drain into a jug to remove the onion and bay leaves. 4. Melt the butter in a small pan, then add the flour and whisk in. Gradually add the milk, whisking as you go. Add a little more milk each time it thickens up. 5. Season with salt, pepper, onion granules and garlic powder, then add the cheese or vegan alternatives and whisk in until melted. Taste to check the seasoning.6. Drain the cauliflower and whizz with the cheese sauce either in a blender or with a hand blender until you have a smooth sauce.7. Once the pasta is cooked to perfection, drain and mix with the sauce. 8. Serve and enjoy!
Details
Total time:
Yield: Serves 4-6



Macaroni Salad - Kalyn's Kitchen
Here are a few more macaroni recipes for you to try:




42 comments:

  1. lovely combination of flavours looks wonderful

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  2. It sounds delicious. I love Mac&Cheese and with cauliflower they are healthier.

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  3. lovely way of getting some cauliflower with the pasta. I am always looking for new sauces to serve pasta with.

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    1. Me too Mayuri, it's easy to get stuck making the same sauces over and over.

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  4. Oh, that looks really tasty. We've taken to bodging a bit of cauliflower in everything in lieu of potatoes to thicken - soups, mac-and-cheese, white gravy or cheese sauce, even. May as well load up on the veg in stead of the pasta, I guess.

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    1. It's a good idea Tanita, definitely and one of the food trends for 2016. It's nice to see it's getting more attention again as it was overlooked for more fancy veg for a long time.

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  5. oooh, I LOVE this idea of including cauliflower in this classic dish. Genius. It looks amazing!

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  6. Gosh I am drooling all over my keyboard. I need to make this!
    Sophie
    x
    A Story of a Girl

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    1. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do Sophie :)

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  7. What a great idea. Will be trying this next time :)

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  8. Oh yum this is my kinda supper! Can't beat a creamy cauliflower or macaroni cheese, and as I'm doing Veganuary I'm definitely giving your vegan version a go!

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    1. Excellent! Hope you enjoy it as much as Graham does.

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  9. oh i adore cauliflower - great idea to include it!

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  10. I'm with Cooper, I much prefer my cauliflower smothered in cheese sauce too lol! Great recipe, love the vegan substitute suggestions too!

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  11. Gearing up for another vegan month with my teen so bookmarked. I did a version of this without blending the cauli recently - really good. However my 17 year old still insists on tomato sauce without bits so I know all about smooth sauces!

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    1. Yes children are so funny about what they like to eat and what they don't. I think this would be gorgsous with florets of cauliflower through it.

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  12. Love the idea of creating a smooth cauliflower cheese sauce for the macaroni and what a very clever way of getting in extra veg for Cooper. Stumbled and yummed ;)

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  13. Love macaroni cheese, love cauliflower cheese - never thought to combine them. Genius!

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    1. Thanks Kavey, it works really well. Very tasty!

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  14. I have never thought of using cauliflower in a Mac and cheese. Such a brilliant idea. Looks super delicious:-)

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  15. I am so loving all the cauliflower recipes I find online these days..its like the forgotten veggie that has be rediscovered...thanks for sharing..

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    1. I know it's so nice it isn't forgotten anymore. Such a great veg and very economical.

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  16. Great combo there Jac, and I love the dairy free option too!
    Janie x

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  17. This looks like comfort food heaven! I love the touch of the bay leaves and the mustard too!

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    1. It adds extra flavour to the sauce. Really worth it.

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  18. That's just lovely. I had to pin it so I can try making that at that some point.

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  19. This is definitely a recipe to enjoy right now. Cauliflower is the perfect partner to a mac & cheese and improves it too. Kids definitely aren't that keen on it and I think mine would prefer it like this, blitzed into the sauce :))

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  20. Ohhh this sounds so lovely! I'll have to give it a go - and a great sneaky way to hide some extra veg too! I'm veggie - have been most of my life, but the rest of my family aren't so I'm always looking for something that I can make for everyone! :-)
    Emma xx

    http://www.emmainbromley.co.uk

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    1. This one will be a crowd pleaser Emma. Everyone loves macaroni :)

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  21. Love the idea of adding the cauliflower right into the sauce, so clever. Looks amazing!

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I love reading comments, so thank you for taking the time to leave one. Unfortunately, I'm bombarded with spam, so I've turned on comment moderation. I'll publish your comments as soon as I can and respond to them. Don't panic, they will disappear when you hit publish. Jac x