Vegan Pumpkin Mac and Cheese with Baked Brussels Sprouts

After veganizing the classic version of Mac and Cheese, we're not introducing you to the fall version of the all-time favorite comfort food. Especially when it's getting cold outside, we crave for cozy, comfy food that's combined with some seasonal vegetables.

In addition to a creamy pumpkin sauce, which will snuggle with a pasta of your choice, we serve baked Brussels sprouts. These guys make a great pair! If you don't like Brussels sprouts, you can of course, kick them from this recipe (or replace them with other vegetables such as broccoli). Or just trust me when I say: there's hardly anything more delicious than crispy Brussels sprouts from the oven – even Julia, who's not a big fan, likes to eat them this way.

Vegan Pumpkin Mac and Cheese with Baked Brussels Sprouts

4 servings
40 minutes

Ingredients

For the Brussels sprouts:

  • 500 g (1 lb) Brussels sprouts
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1-2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • salt
  • pepper

For the mac and cheese:

  • 500 g (18 oz) pasta of your choice
  • 150 g (5.5 oz) cashews (soaked in water for at least 30 min.)
  • 250 g (9 oz) Hokkaido pumpkin
  • 1 onion
  • 200 ml (1 cup) cooking water of the pasta
  • 60 ml (0.25 cup) plant-based heavy cream
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp white or yellow miso paste
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • nutmeg
  • cayenne pepper
  • paprika
  • salt
  • pepper

For serving:

  • fresh parsley

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C/355°F (circulating air). If you haven't done already, soak cashews in warm water for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Wash Brussels sprouts, then remove the stem, and any outer leaves that are a bit browned or dry. Halve the Brussels sprouts. Toss Brussels sprouts in olive oil, balsamic vinegar, then season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet or a casserole dish and bake for approx. 15-20 minutes.
  3. For the sauce, peel, and halve an onion. Halve, deseed, and chop the pumpkin. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, then add the onion and pumpkin. Simmer for approx, 10-15 minutes, or until the veggies fork-tender and soft enough to be blended.
  4. Right before the onion and pumpkin are soft enough, bring another pot of salted water to a boil and prepare pasta according to the package instructions. Reserve at least 1 cup of the cooking water.
  5. Drain cashews. Add cooked pumpkin, onion, soaked cashews, approx. 1 cup of the cooking water, and plant-based heavy cream to a blender and blend until smooth. Season with salt, pepper, cayenne, nutmeg, paprika, miso paste, nutritional yeast, and lemon juice to taste. If you want the sauce to be creamier, just add more pasta water or plant-based heavy cream.
  6. Toss cooked pasta in creamy pumpkin sauce, then sprinkle fresh parsley on top. Serve with baked Brussels sprouts.

Tip: To make this dish gluten-free, use a gluten-free pasta and nutritional yeast based on molasses. If you want to prepare it soy-free, kick the miso paste and use a plant-based heavy cream based on oats or so.

Zucker ↦ Jagdwurst Donut
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