You Won't Believe this Mac 'n' Cheese is Dairy-Free
There is nothing like the combination of eating your favourite food while watching your favourite show. When I eliminated dairy from my diet, I really missed my Friday night in guilty pleasure food; homemade mac ’n' cheese. I tried to recreate my old mac ’n' cheese recipe to be dairy free, but these recipes always fell short.
Years later, Prairie Melt cheese was born and it was just what my dairy free mac ’n' cheese cheese was missing! This recipe is creamy, ooey-gooey delicious and I am proud to say that there is no compromise to the flavour. I unintentionally even managed to fool some picky family members into thinking they were eating the dairy-based version at a family gathering last year!
A huge bonus is that it is even quicker and easier to make than it’s dairy counterpart! There is no roux to worry about (which always manages to stick to the bottom of the pan), no clumping or breaking of the sauce and no grating cheese. This recipe will only take 15 minutes to assemble and you will be eating it within the hour.
This mac ’n’ cheese is also one of my go-to potluck dishes, as it is always a crowd pleaser - especially amongst kiddos.
Recipe tips and tricks:
Plant Milk: I usually make this recipe with soy milk but any plant based milk will do. I made it once with rice milk for a family member who couldn’t have soy or nuts and it turned out just as good!
Noodles: You can use classic elbow macaroni noodles as listed in the recipe or a pasta of your choosing. The sauce itself is gluten free, so this recipe could be easily made without gluten by swapping the noodles and bread crumbs for a gluten free alternative.
Immersion blender tip: I like to use an immersion blender to finish the sauce. This cuts down on time waiting for the Prairie Melt to melt and gives the sauce an extra smooth finish, blending the onion powder and garlic powder in nicely. This step is optional though, so if you don’t have an immersion blender, no sweat! Really, it only shaves 5 minutes off the prep time.
Sauce consistency: The sauce will seem runny at first before you add the noodles. This will not be the case after it is baked. It thickens so nicely in the oven and truly transforms into the saucy, cheesy goodness you would expect. Even without the oven, it will actually thicken quite a bit, the longer it sits.
Bake time: Depending on the bread crumbs you use and how browned you prefer, bake time may need to be extended 5-10 minutes. This is really a matter of personal preference.
Larger batches: This recipe multiplies flawlessly. Double or triple it for company, family or yummy leftovers for later.
Variations: If you prefer something other than a classic mac ’n’ cheese, feel free to spice it up! Next Act Pub, makes a mouthwatering variation using jalapeños and fresh tomatoes. We would love to see how you put your twist on this classic style recipe . Tag us in your creations @goodstockfoodsltd and @prairie.melt
Side dishes: A great side dish can really elevate mac ’n’ cheese as well. Nice and light salads are always a great option, as, let’s face it, mac ’n’ cheese is a heavier dish. However, my all time favourite side dish with Mac ’n’ cheese is lemon garlic pan-fried fiddleheads. These delicacies are only available one a year so swapping asparagus is a great option too!
Mac ’n' Cheese
- 1 cup raw elbow macaroni noodles (or two cups cooked)
- 1 cup Prairie Melt
- 1 cup plant milk
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup Prairie Melt
- 1/4 cup Bread crumbs
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
- Cook noodles according to cooking instructions on the package.
- Place Prairie Melt, plant milk and lemon juice in a small non-stick pan. Stir over low heat until Prairie melt is fully melted and begins to bubble.
- Stir in garlic powder, onion powder and salt.
- Combine cooked noodles and sauce and transfer to a small casserole dish
- Crumble Prairie Melt over the noodle mixture then sprinkle bread crumbs and Italian seasoning if desired.
- Bake in oven for 20 minutes uncovered until bread crumbs are golden brown.