This easy vegan pumpkin mac and cheese is the best recipe to make during the colder months. It is so warm, comforting, cheesy, and full of flavour. Takes only 30 minutes total to prep and cook, and is such an easy meal to make when you’re in a rush! It also doubles as an easy lunch for the next day. It’s a perfect healthier version of mac and cheese because of the hidden veggie in there (thanks to the pumpkin!) and you’ll be going back for seconds, if not thirds, of this recipe!
Ingredients to make this easy vegan pumpkin mac and cheese and substitutions
- Pasta. You can use any type you prefer. I used one box of rotini (410 g).
- Olive Oil. To drizzle in your pan when making the mac and cheese sauce.
- Garlic Clove. For some added flavour in your sauce.
- Almond Milk. Make sure to use original unsweetened, as we don’t want a sweet flavour to this mac and cheese! You can also use any plant milk of your choice
- Flour. I used regular all-purpose flour. Mixing the flour with the plant milk creates a thick and creamy base for your sauce.
- Pure Pumpkin Purée. Make sure not to use pumpkin pie filling, because that has added sugar that will make the pasta sauce taste sweet!
- Pasta Water. The key to thinning out the mac and cheese sauce! It is already starchy from the boiled pasta, so it makes your sauce come to a perfect consistency.
- Spices. I used a mix of salt & pepper, turmeic, garlic powder, paprika, and dried parsley flakes.
- Nutritional Yeast. For an added “cheezy” flavour.
- Vegan Cheese. This will be to mix in to your sauce on the stove then to add extra once cooked. You can use any flavour you’d like, I personally used mozzarella.
Tips on making the best healthy pumpkin mac and cheese
- Whisk almond milk and flour together first. Ensure to whisk the flour a bit at a time and to whisk continuously so it does not get clumpy. This will give you a creamy, cheesy sauce.
- Continuously whisk your sauce. While your pasta is boiling, you want to make sure you’re constantly whisking the pumpkin “cheese” sauce. You don’t want any flour clumps in the sauce, so make sure to keep mixing!
- Add extra vegan cheese once your pasta has cooked. After you’ve turned the heat off and taken the pan off your burner, make sure to add some extra vegan cheese to the pot and mix it in. It adds even more flavour and creates that amazing cheese pull in the pasta!
How to store this vegan pumpkin mac and cheese
Place the mac and cheese in an airtight container and keep it in the fridge for up to one week. I have not tried freezing the pasta, but it should last in the freezer for up to one month. Simply let it thaw in room temperature for about 15-20 minutes, then place in the microwave or oven to warm up before enjoying.
- If you want more pumpkin-inspired recipes, make these Fluffy Vegan Pumpkin Muffins with Streusel Topping! They are so easy to make and incredibly delicious.
- Try my Easy Vegan Mac and Cheese if you’re craving an original baked style mac and cheese! It’s so easy to make, so creamy, and delicious.
- Still searching for tasty pasta dishes? My Easy Vegan Cherry Tomato Pasta will definitely hit the spot! Simple to make and full of flavour.
Easy Vegan Pumpkin Mac and Cheese
- 410 g box of pasta of choice, I used 1 box of Rotini pasta
- 2 tbsp olive oil, to drizzle in pan
- 1 clove garlic, minced or finely diced
- 1 1/2 cups almond milk, original unsweetened
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup pure pumpkin purée
- 1/4 cup pasta water
- salt & pepper, to taste
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp dried parsley flakes
- 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 3/4 cup vegan cheese, plus more to top (I used vegan Mozzarella)
- Fill a pot with water, bring to a boil and cook pasta as directed on package.
- In a large pan, heat up some olive oil on medium heat, add your garlic and let simmer until fragrant.
- Pour in almond milk and flour, and whisk together until a slightly thick sauce consistency forms.
- Turn heat to low and add in the pure pumpkin purée and continue whisking.
- Add in all spices, then add in vegan cheese and continue to whisk well.
- Drain pasta and reserve some of the water to pour into the sauce. Add your pasta to the pumpkin mac and cheese sauce and mix until well combined.
- Add your pumpkin mac and cheese to a bowl, serve, (optionally can top with extra vegan cheese) and enjoy!