Greetings Gr(AteFull) friends and family,
I have a special recipe to share with you today. It’s a favorite of mine at the moment, especially since we’re in the season of squash. Butternut squash macaroni and cheese!
First I want to ask, have you heard of or used nutritional yeast before? Well, if you haven’t, you should try it because it’s DA BOMB… and here’s why:
Nutritional yeast provides a vegan protein source with all nine essential amino acids- which are building blocks to protein. Most of these amino acids can typically only be received into the body by consuming animal products. As a vegetarian or vegan, it’s very important to be mindful of the protein we receive which would also extend to being mindful of amino acids.
Another great health benefit to consuming nutritional yeast is that it is a good source of B vitamins, including vitamin B12, another nutrient typically only found in animal foods.
According to yeast expert Seymour Pomper, Ph.D., it is highly prescribed in Germany because of its anti-viral and antibacterial properties. It may be useful for the following indications:
- Candida infection (Fungal)
- Chronic acne
- Loss of appetite
- Immune system stimulation
Tossing all those health benefits aside, one of my favorite aspects of nutritional yeast is that it has a nutty, cheese-like flavor that can be used as a cheese substitute in recipes. Which is what we’re doing today!
This butternut squash recipe will be a great staple around the holidays to share with your family, friends, and co-workers. It takes a little bit of time and love to prepare but it will be so worth it when you taste its wonderful fresh taste and see the reaction on your friend’s faces when they try a new vegan dish full of flavor and life!
A blender or food processor is recommended and maybe even necessary to complete this. I’ve never tried this recipe using a regular mixing hand blender, but if you do I’d love to know the results. Actually, if you try this at all, I would be happy to hear results and reviews, please.
This sauce tastes
- slightly cheesy (in your non-typical cheese sense)
- with just the right amount of kick from jalapeno balanced by smooth squash.
Here’s the recipe:
Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheeze
Prep 20 mins, Cook 45 mins: Total time: 65 mins
Yield: about 4 cups of finished sauce
Comfort Cuisine, Cheeze Substitute
<3 Glitterfly Jessa
- 1 medium-size butternut squash, peeled and cubed (see step 1)
- 2 small-medium russet potatoes, peeled and cubed into 1″x 1″
- Half a yellow onion, cut into small cubes 1/2″ x 1/2″
- Half of a red, yellow and orange bell pepper, cut into small cubes about 1/2″ x 1/2″
- 1/4-1/2 jalapeno pepper (if desired for kick of spice), diced very small
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast + 2 Tablespoons
- 1 cup milk (dairy-free milk of choice- I prefer almond milk to reduce my soy consumption: post on why I lessen my soy consumption coming soon)
- 2 Tablespoons oil of choice
- 2 Tablespoons flour of choice
- Margarine, olive oil or coconut oil- basically any oil you prefer to cook with
- Garlic Powder, Salt
- 16 oz of dried pasta of choice, to be boiled (elbow, penne, and ziti are great here)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Boil water and add pasta. When pasta is soft, drain and set aside.
- Cut butternut squash in half and peel. Word of caution, the butternut squash will probably start to ‘sweat’ and may get slippery. Once peeled, cube into about 1-inch squares.
- Toss cubed butternut squash in oil of choice and a sprinkle of garlic powder. Place on an oiled baking tray and bake in the oven for 30 mins.
- While the butternut squash is cooking, heat a small amount of oil with 3/4 cup water to submerge but not completely cover the potatoes in a large saute pan.
- When most of the water boils off and into the potatoes, add a little more oil if necessary then add in the diced onion. Once the potatoes and onion are soft and cooked through, set off to the side in a bowl.
- Using the pan that just held the potato and onion mix, cook up the bell peppers and jalapeno till soft and set aside in a different bowl then the potatoes and onion.
- In the same pan, add 2 Tablespoons oil/margarine until it melts and mix in 2 Tablespoons flour. Should get a thick paste like substance- referred to as a roux.
- Add 1 cup milk to the roux. Whisk until smooth and not clumpy. Add 1/4 cup nutritional yeast with 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder with a pinch of salt. This will be the cheese mix.
- Add the saute bell peppers and jalapeno to the cheese mix.
- By now the butternut squash should be done and you can blend it with the potatoes and onion and a little water. I added about 3/4 cup water in total to the squash veg mixture. I had to separate the squash veg mixture into 2 batches when blending because it was too big for just one. **BE CAREFUL WHEN BLENDING HOT VEGGIES, if there’s not air getting out, the heat could cause a big hot mess due to pressure.
- Add cheese mix to the now blended squash veg mixture. Add 2 Tablespoons more to cheese and squash veg mixture.
- Top the boiled pasta with butternut squash cheese sauce, and prepare to enjoy… Bless the food and say thanks to yourself for taking the time and energy to create a loving meal.
- Be Gr(AteFull), happy and full.
Namaste from my happy heart to yours,