Recipe by Chef Cindy
Mac & Cheese is voted one of America’s top favorite foods. Study after study showed it within the top 10! Is it because it goes so well with burgers & hot dogs – more of America’s favorite foods? Or is it America’s obsession with cheese? Whatever the reason, it was my desire to make a healthier version of it since it is loved by so many. Once you try this Vegan version of Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese, you’ll never crave the cheesy version again. Each creamy bite is packed with flavor and the extra pow of nutritional benefits from the butternut squash and kale.
Not sure how to cut up butternut squash, then check out this post on selecting, cutting, and roasting butternut squash.
Let’s Talk Carbon Footprint!
The carbon footprint of this recipe is 545.0 gCO2e per serving (18.0% fair daily food emissions). That’s a low carbon footprint for such a filling and hearty meal! That sounds great right, but what does it actually mean? A carbon footprint is the the amount of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane, that are produced by our daily activities and lifestyle choices. Things like how you choose to heat your house, your mode of transportation to work, and even the food you choose to put into your body all contribute to your carbon footprint. Thats why it’s more important than ever to be mindful of your food choices and eat sustainably. For more ideas on how to make the transition, check out our post HERE!
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Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
- Food Processor
- 1 pound pasta cooked
- 1 medium butternut squash peeled & cubed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 garlic cloves
- ¼ cup tahini
- 1 cup vegetable broth or oat milk
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 2 cups chopped fresh kale put aside 2 tablespoons and chop fine for topping
- Preheat oven 375°.
- In a large bowl, toss the cubed butternut squash with olive oil and salt. Spread butternut squash on a parchment lined baking sheet, and bake for approximately 30 minutes, shifting around halfway through.
- While roasting, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a small fry pan and add chopped onion. When softened, add the garlic and cook 2 - 3 more minutes. Add the kale and cook until wilted.
- Combine the butternut squash and onion & kale mix to a food processor. Add tahini, broth or plant-based milk and blend until smooth.
- After straining the pasta, mix all the ingredients together in the same pot and stir until well blended. Heat and add additional salt & pepper if needed.
- Top with 2 tablespoons freshly chopped kale.
- Equipment needed: baking sheet, food processor
- Pasta: I used Cavatelli Pasta but any shape/type will do