Key Takeaways:

A year ago, Karen decided to follow a vegan diet and enjoys finding creative ways to eat plant-based meals. She submitted a recipe for vegan mac and cheese with air-fried mushrooms.

Cooking time

40 minutes




Cheese sauce:

4 cups raw cashews, soaked and drained

3 1/2 cups unsweetened, unflavored plant-based milk

1/4 cup nutritional yeast

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon Goya All-Purpose Seasoning with Pepper or ¬Ĺ teaspoon of salt and pepper to taste


1 cup Kelly’s Just Crumbs or panko bread crumbs or homemade bread crumbs

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

2 tablespoons Miyoko’s plant-based butter or your favorite plant-based butter melted

1/2 teaspoon Himalayan salt or another salt to your taste


1  package wheat elbow macaroni or wheat shell pasta of choice

Air-fried mushrooms:

8 ounces baby bella or other sliced mushrooms 

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil

2 cloves garlic minced or 1 teaspoon garlic powder

2 teaspoons Bragg Amino acid or soy sauce


1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the bread crumbs, nutritional yeast, melted butter, and salt. 

3. Cook the pasta in salted water according to the package directions, minus a few minutes of cooking time, which keeps the macaroni from becoming mushy. (Slightly undercooked pasta allows it to continue cooking in the oven while baking.)

4. Drain 

5. Transfer the cooked pasta to the prepared baking dish.

6. In a Vitamix or high-speed blender, combine the drained cashews, milk, nutritional yeast, garlic, onion powder, garlic powder, and pepper. 

7. Blend on high until completely smooth and the exterior of the blender is warm‚ÄĒabout 3 minutes.¬†

8. Pour the cheese sauce over the pasta and stir to ensure the sauce is evenly distributed. 

9. Sprinkle with the topping. 

10. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the mac and cheese is hot throughout and the bread crumbs are golden brown. 

11. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 to 8 minutes.

Do not over-bake the mac and cheese. Bake it in the oven just long enough to thicken the sauce, creating golden edges and bringing the flavors of the dish together. Over-baking will cause the dish to become dry.

 Air-fried mushrooms:

1. Prepare mushrooms by rinsing quickly. 

2. Preheat air fryer to 360 degrees F for 5 minutes. 

3. Place mushrooms, garlic, oil, and Bragg Amino in a zip lock bag to marinate and blend while tossing for 3-4 minutes.  

5. Place mushrooms in the air fryer in a single, not overlapping layer.  

6. Air fry for about 5-6 minutes. 

7. Remove and place mushrooms on top of the mac and cheese casserole or on top of individual bowls and garnish with cilantro.

Nov 30, 2022
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