Not your cafeteria's vegan mac and cheese: Moody Monday

Welcome to the second week of VeganMoFo! Hard to believe we've already been blogging for six days now, am I right? I'm telling you, the first week of MoFo feels super chaotic and confusing (even when you have the best laid plans), so I always seem to enjoy the second week more. Most everyone is in their groove, the really awesome recipes start coming out and the big giveaway announcements start appearing.

(Stay tuned for my really big, really awesome giveaway announcement on Wednesday. Trust me, with a retail value of $450, this is one contest you really, really want to be around for.)

The funny thing about my second week is that I didn't (and don't) have it nearly as scrupulously planned out as my first week was. I was done cooking last week's food on Monday! This week, I'm lucky to get it done the night before!

But that's the way the VeganMoFo cookie crumbles, and as long as there's a recipe for that cookie, it doesn't matter!

In case you're new to my blog or not privy to my theme, I'm dedicating this month to many of our beloved television show favorites. Last week we tackled True Blood, Melrose Place, Big Brother and Gilligan's Island. And don't you worry, we've got just as much fun in store for you this week.

So for today's Moody Monday madness, I've decided to create a recipe for my favorite television show in the entire world: Grey's Anatomy. What can I say? I'm a sucker for a mature Patrick Dempsey. And well, when Eric Dane was still on the show, he wasn't too hard on the eyes, either.

So while brainstorming ideas with my husband about what I could do, I told him I was thinking about revamping cafeteria food found in a hospital, you know, since Grey's Anatomy takes place in a hospital. I was pleasantly surprised when the same exact food came first to both of us: macaroni and cheese.

And what's even better about this awesome Moody Monday recipe is not only does it meet my theme, it falls in line with VeganMoFo's daily theme of Mac and Cheese Monday (because really, what other kind of Monday even exists?)

So I present you with this killer loaded vegan mac and cheese recipe you probably won't find in any hospital cafeteria near you, but you'll wish you could!

Loaded vegan mac and cheese
(serves 6-8)
1 cup raw cashews
1/2 cup plain vegan yogurt (I find it's a little more sour than sour cream sometimes)
1/2 cup plain almond milk
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
10 oz cooked whole wheat elbow pasta
1 wedge Daiya cheddar cheese
1 TBS onion powder
1 TBS garlic powder
Handful of fresh chives, diced into tiny pieces
Breadcrumbs or panko for a crunchish topping
Vegan bacon bits (I stirred in half a cup and then added another half a cup on top).

In a small saucepan, boil the cashews on high heat for 15-20 minutes. (You just want enough water to keep them submerged). In another saucepan, boil your pasta according to the packaging instructions.

Once the cashews are cooked, preheat your oven to 350. Toss cashews, yogurt. almond milk, nutritional yeast, onion powder and garlic powder into a food processor. Blend until super duper creamy (it kind of looked like cake batter).

In a medium bowl, stir your nut "cheese" blend with your pasta. Take your wedge of Daiya and cut into small chunks (about the size of a dime). Stir these cubes into the cashew pasta mix. Stir in chives and bacon bits. Scoop into a casserole dish (mine was 1.5 QT) and bake for 20 minutes. Take out of the oven and top with breadcrumbs or panko and vegan bacon bits. Bake for 10 more minutes.

This ends up tasting like one of the best comfort, homecooked foods ever. Trust me.

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  1. I've been wanting to try a "nut" cheese sauce, this might just be a winner!

  2. Looks good!
    I'm lazy.
    I drizzle olive oil on pasta and sprinkle it with nutritional yeast and my kid loves it, even though she won't eat regular mac and cheese.