This chickpea mac and cheese is the ultimate comfort food and is made healthier with a few key swaps!
I get it – resisting pasta, especially an ooey gooey cheesy one is damn near impossible to do and I’m right there with you.
This is why I’m so excited to be sharing this ‘Cheesy’ Chickpea Mac and Cheese with you!
So this is the first recipe in my 3 part series on cooking with chickpeas. You can check out the second recipe here!
Make sure that you watch all 3!
Since I’m allll about those healthy swaps we’ll be making a few key swaps to make this Chickpea Mac and Cheese recipe fall in line with your health goals while still satisfying your taste buds.
The first is swapping out regular pasta for chickpea pasta. In this recipe I’ll be using Chickapea penne. It’s organic pasta made only with chickpeas and lentils. The penne will be perfect to hug the delicious cheesy butternut mac sauce.
The second swap is cheese. Instead of cheese we’ll use a combo of butternut and nutritional yeast which will make a smooth and velvety sauce that will probably have you licking your plate!
This Chickpea Mac and Cheese is the ultimate comfort food and healthy comfort foods have been tapped as a food trend for 2021. It’s so important that instead of depriving ourselves we find a way to celebrate our fav foods in a healthier way. Fiber, which chickpeas are loaded in, are not only crucial for digestion, diets low in fiber have been linked to depression.
Fiber also helps you to regulate your blood sugar and insulin. This is important because when you have a spike in blood sugar followed by a sharp decline this zaps your energy and focus. Many of the processed foods like white pasta do this which is why this recipe is perfect to satisfy that pasta craving!
Chickpea Mac and Cheese
- 1 ½ cups butternut squash (peeled and chopped into cubes)
- ½ large sweet onion (roughly chopped)
- 8 oz package Chickapea Penne
- ¼ cup reserved cooking liquid (from the noodles)
- ¼ cup raw cashews (soaked in hot water for 30 minutes)
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- ½ tsp dijon mustard
- ⅛ tsp turmeric
- ⅛ tsp smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ⅛ tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp salt
- ⅛ tsp black pepper
- In a large pot add onion and butternut squash covering with water by at least an inch or two. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium and simmer until veggies are tender (about 15 minutes, test butternut with a fork to check if it’s tender).
- Cook chickpea pasta according to package instructions reserving ¼ cup cooking liquid once noodles are done cooking and before you drain.
- Place noodles back in the pot and set aside (you can run cold water over them every 5 mins or so to prevent sticking).
- When squash and onions are tender, drain then add them to a high speed blender with the cashews, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, salt, dijon, garlic powder, black pepper, smoked paprika, turmeric, nutmeg and reserved cooking liquid from the pasta.
- Blend until completely smooth. Use a tamper if necessary to push ingredients to the bottom of the blender.
- Add butternut squash sauce to the pasta and stir, making sure every noodle is covered in sauce. Reheat if needed.