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All About Vegan Mac & Cheese

In just over 6 weeks, my new book, Vegan Mac & Cheese will be published and I couldn’t be more excited.  This was a fun book to write and the response I’ve been getting about it has been tremendous. My virtual switchboard has been lighting up with questions about what kind of recipes are in the book , if any of the recipes are gluten-free or soy-free, and what is used to make the cheese component vegan.

I’m happy to report that there are a guide variety of ingredients used to make the recipes, so if you avoid soy, nuts, or gluten, you will be able to enjoy most of the recipes in the book, often by making a simple substitution.  For example, if you use gluten-free pasta instead of wheat pasta or using one of the vegetable-based sauces instead of one made with cashews or soy.

The creamy goodness of the cheesy sauces are made in several different ways. Some are classic roux-based sauces, others are made with cashew cream, a few are made with silken tofu, and many of them are made with blended cooked vegetables. Whether you prefer your mac and cheese saucy or firm, stovetop or baked, you’ll find lots to love in this book, including an entire chapter devoted to “fun with mac and cheese” filled with recipes for using up leftovers (if you have any!)

For a sneak peek inside the book, here’s a list of the contents with recipe titles.  You can pre-order Vegan Mac & Cheese on Amazon right now and you’ll get it as soon as it comes out.  As a bonus, send my publisher an email with your proof of purchase and they’ll send you some bonus recipes!

Vegan Mac & Cheese

More Than 50 Delicious Plant-Based Recipes for the Ultimate Comfort Food

 Introduction: Thinking Outside the Box

Chapter 1: Basic Vegan Mac & Cheese

Soy-Good Mac and Cheese

Free Mac

Cashew Cheesy Mac

Mom’s Baked Mac UnCheese

Classy Mac and Cheese

One-Pot Cheesy Mac

Easy-Cheesy Pantry Mac

Better-than-Boxed Mac UnCheese

Chapter 2: Global Cheesy Macs

Mac and Thai


Greek Spinach Orzo Bake

Blushing Baked Ziti

Italian Macaroni Pie

Salsa Mac and Queso

Creamy Curry Mac

Noodle Kugel

Bajan Macaroni Pie

Berbere-Spiced Mac and Cheese


Mac and Creole

Chapter 3: Mac and Veggies

Roasted Butternut Mac UnCheese

Cheesy Spaghetti Squash Mac

Spinach-Artichoke Mac and Cheese

Rutabaga Mac and Greens

Cheesy Broccoli Mac

Buffalo Cauliflower Mac

Arugula Pesto Mac UnCheese

Asparagus Mac and Hollandaise

Smoky Mac and Peas with Mushroom Bacon

Brussels and Bacon Cheesy Mac

Cheesy Primavera Mac

Roasted Vegetable Cheesy Mac

Mac and Giardiniera

Roasted Garlic Mac and Cheese

Bill’s Artichoke Mac and Chips

Chapter 4: Meaty Macs

Chili Mac

Crabby Mac UnCheese

BBQ Jack and Mac

Philly Cheesesteak Mac

Kid’s Stuff Mac ‘n’ Cheese

Shepherd’s Mac

Lobster Mushroom Mac UnCheese

Brat & Kraut Mac & Cheese

Jerk Tempeh Mac

Tetrazzini Mac

Mac and Stroganoff

Chapter 5: Fun with Mac & Cheese

Cheesy Mac Mug

Mac UnCheese Omelet

Waffled Mac and Cheese

Cheesy Broccoli Mac Soup

Mac and Cheese Balls

Cheesy Mac Muffins

Mac ‘n’ Cheese Pizza

Mac UnCheese Quesadillas

Indian Vermicelli Pudding

Sweet Noodle Kugel

Preorder now!


Celebrate National Mac and Cheese Day!

Did you know July 14 is National Mac and Cheese Day? I can’t think of a better way to celebrate this classic comfort food that to enjoy some delicious vegan mac and cheese.

In honor of this special day, I’m sharing one of my favorite recipes from my upcoming book, Vegan Mac & Cheese. In the coming weeks, I’ll be providing sneak peeks of what’s inside the book.  For now, enjoy this recipe for Buffalo Cauliflower Mac and celebrate National Mac and Cheese Day.

And, in case you missed it….when you pre-order Vegan Mac & Cheese on Amazon, my publisher will send you free bonus recipes.

Buffalo Cauliflower Mac

Buffalo cauliflower has been making the rounds, so it should come as no surprise that it turns up in a mac uncheese. The cheesy, saucy macaroni is a perfect foil for the spicy hot cauliflower.


1 large russet potato, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) chunks

1 large carrot, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) chunks

21/2 cups (600 ml) vegetable broth

2/3 cup (40 g) nutritional yeast

2 tablespoons (30 ml) tamari

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon salt


1 head cauliflower, cored and cut into bite-size pieces

Olive oil cooking spray

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup (80 ml) hot pepper sauce, preferably Frank’s RedHot

4 tablespoons (56 g) vegan butter, melted

1 tablespoon (15 ml) apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon paprika


16 ounces (454 g) elbow macaroni, or other small pasta shape


Sauce: In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the potato, carrot, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and cook for 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender when pierced with a fork. Carefully transfer the mixture to a blender or food processor. Add the nutritional yeast, tamari, onion powder, and garlic powder, and salt. Blend until the sauce is smooth. Tasste and add more salt if needed. Set aside.

Cauliflower: Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the cauliflower in a single layer on the prepared pan. Spray the cauliflower with cooking spray, then and sprinkle with the garlic powder and salt. Roast for 20 minutes, then transfer to a large bowl and add the hot sauce, butter, vinegar, and paprika. Stir well to coat. Return the cauliflower to the baking sheet and arrange it in a single layer. Bake for 10 minutes longer.

Macaroni: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook according to the package directions until al dente. Cook the macaroni in a pot of boiling salted water until it is al dente. Drain well and return it to the pot. Stir in the reserved sauce and place the pot over low heat. Cook over low heat for a few minutes to heat through. Stir in the buffalo cauliflower and gently stir to combine. Serve hot.


Vegan Mac & Cheese Bonus Recipes

More news about Vegan Mac & Cheese! You can now get bonus recipes:

If you order from Amazon before September 17, 2019 you’ll receive additional bonus recipes that you can start using today! Just send your proof of purchase to the following email address: veganmaccheese@quarto.com and we’ll send you the free recipes.

When submitting you pre-order proof of purchase, please attach or include in your email a screen shot of your order confirmation. (Simply right-click your order page on Amazon to create shot of it.) Here is a sample screen shot:


Artichoke-Spinach Dip

Artichoke-Spinach Dip

I love anything with artichokes: grilled fresh baby artichokes are the beyond compare.  When I can’t get fresh artichokes, I satisfy my craving with frozen, jarred, or canned.  I like to put marinated artichoke hearts in salads and that the creamy and delicious artichoke-spinach dip is a longtime favorite.  In fact, I’m such a fan of that dip that I’ve developed a few other ways to use it such as a pasta sauce, or as a tasty filling for palmiers.

First, the dip itself.  Sometimes I make it with a homemade cashew cream cheese (see Veganize It!), but more often than not, I opt for saving time and use a commercial vegan cream cheese.  The dip is quick and easy to make and can be made ahead of when you need it.  You can pop it in the oven just before serving time or do what I usually do:  heat it in a small slow cooker.

Artichoke-Spinach Dip

1 (10-ounce) bag baby spinach, lightly steamed, then squeezed dry

1 cup vegan cream cheese

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/4 cup nutritional yeast

3/4 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 (12 -ounce) jars marinated artichoke hearts, well drained and blotted dry

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees °F.

Lightly steam or microwave the spinach for 1 minute or until wilted.  Allow to cool.

Combine the cream cheese, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in a food processor. Blend until very smooth.

When the spinach is cool enough to handle, squeeze any liquid from it and add it to the mixture in the food processor.  Add the artichokes and pulse to combine, leaving some texture. Do not over-process.

Transfer to an ovenproof baking dish, and bake uncovered for 15 minutes, or until hot. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Serve with toasted French bread slices or your favorite crackers.

Makes about 3 cups

Slow Cooker Variation:  Instead of baking in the oven, transfer the dip to a small (1 quart) slow cooker and cook on High for about 2 hours, or until hot.

 As a pasta sauce: To transform this dip into a great pasta sauce, simply thin it out with your favorite unsweetened plant milk until it’s the perfect consistency.  Then, add a little more onion powder, maybe some more nutritional yeast, and a little extra salt and pepper.  Heat until warm and toss with freshly cooked pasta.

 Palmier filling: Another favorite way to enjoy the creamy goodness of artichoke-spinach dip is to use it as a filling for these light and flaky palmiers, made with vegan puff pastry, available in the freezer case of most supermarkets.  Best of all, these palmiers freeze well, so if you only need enough for a few people, you can freeze the second roll (unsliced) and thaw when needed.

Artichoke-Spinach Palmiers

 1 recipe Spinach-Artichoke Dip (see above)

1 package frozen puff pastry, thawed (Pepperidge Farm brand is vegan)

Unfold one sheet of puff pastry onto a flat work surface. Spread half of the artichoke-spinach mixture onto the pastry sheet, spreading to within 1/2 inch of the edges. Roll up one long side of the dough to the middle of the dough, then roll up the other side of the dough so the two rolls meet in the center. Repeat with the remaining dough sheet and filling mixture. Refrigerate for 45 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Using a serrated knife, cut each roll into slices, slightly less than 1/2-inch thick. Place each slice, cut-side down, on parchment-lined baking sheets, allowing about 1-inch of space in between each slice.  Use a metal spatula to flatten the palmiers to 1/4-inch thickness.  Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.



Vegan Mac & Cheese is Coming!

I have some exciting news about my upcoming book. Vegan Mac & Cheese will be released on September 17, 2019.  The best part (for now) is that it is available for Pre-Order on Amazon.

I will be posting more details soon, but for now, I hope you’ll celebrate with me and pre-order your copy of the first any only vegan cookbook dedicated to plant-based recipes for this comfort food favorite.  I love vegan mac and cheese and had so much fun writing a book about it.  If you’re mac and cheese lover too, I think you’re going to love this book!

Stay tuned for more about Vegan Mac & Cheese: More than 50 Delicious Plant-Based Recipes for the Ultimate Comfort Food.


Dumpling Ramen Bowls

In our house, we’re crazy about ramen bowls.  They’re one-dish meals that are healthful, versatile, and easy-to-make. What’s not to love?

The cheapest and easiest noodles to use in ramen bowls are the eponymous ramen noodle bricks that you can find in any grocery store for about 20 cents each. (Just be sure to throw away the seasoning packet — nasty stuff in there!) When I have rice noodles on hand, I use them instead of the ramen noodles, and I’ve also been known to use leftover linguine or angel hair pasta.

For the broth, you can go with adding a regular vegetable soup base (I like Better than Bouillon brand) or even miso paste to water.  We’re tom yum soup fanatics, so more often I will season my broth with a great tom yum soup base I found that contains no animal products.

The vegetables and other ingredients you add to your bowls are only limited by your imagination (or, more accurately, what’s in your fridge).  Usually I add some diced extra-firm tofu (sautéed when I have the time, or just simmered with everything else when I’m in a hurry).  I’ve also been known to add pieces of vegan sausage (as I did here) as well as meatballs when I have them on hand.

I add whatever veggies I have on hand, whether fresh or frozen. These bowls are also a great way to use up small amounts of leftover vegetables.

One of my favorite additions to ramen bowls are Asian dumplings.  I live in a rural area, so until recently, if I wanted Asian dumplings, I’d have to take a road trip to a city with an Asian market. But the nice people at Nasoya sent me samples of their organic Nasoya Vegan Dumplings to try for this post. I’m also happy to report that my local Food Lion now carries these dumplings (they’re in the fresh produce section next to the tofu), so I can now enjoy organic vegan dumplings anytime!  Click here for coupons to give them a try — they’re available in two flavors – Tofu Vegetable and Thai Basil Vegetable.

Below is my recipe for Dumpling Ramen Bowls.   They can be made super-quickly if you use the simmer-everything-together method, or you can take a few extra minutes to saute some of the ingredients separately (such as the dumplings) and add more flavor to the final result. I especially like to use my electric wok when I make these bowls because I find that it makes it easier, whichever method I use.


Here’s a recipe using my preferred method in which I saute a few of the components first:

 Dumpling Ramen Bowls

2 teaspoons neutral vegetable oil

1 package Nasoya Vegan Dumplings

1 ½ cups sliced shiitake mushrooms

2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce

3 cups water

2 teaspoons vegetable soup base or tom yum soup base

2 packages ramen noodles or rice noodles

1/2 cup shredded carrots

2 cups fresh baby spinach or baby bok choy

1 cup cooked broccoli florets (or other cooked vegetable, optional

2 diced vegan sausage links or 1 cup diced extra-firm tofu, optional

Sriracha, to taste, optional

Thai basil leaves or cilantro, optional garnish

Black sesame seeds, optional garnish

Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the dumplings and stir-fry until nicely browned on both sides, about 2 minutes per side.  Add a splash of water, if needed to keep the dumplings from sticking. Remove the dumplings from the wok, and set aside. Reheat the wok or skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the mushrooms and a splash of soy sauce and stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes to brown nicely and soften.  Remove the mushrooms from the wok and set aside.  Bring the the water to a boil in the wok or medium saucepan. Stir in the soup base until blended. Add the ramen noodles, carrot, and remaining soy sauce and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook until the noodles are tender, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach and stir gently until the spinach is wilted.

Divide the noodle mixture into large soup bowls, arranging the carrots and spinach on top of the noodles.  Return the dumplings and mushrooms to the wok and heat until hot.  Arrange the dumplings and mushrooms on top of the noodles, next to the spinach and carrots.  Add the cooked broccoli and vegan sausage and stir-fry for a minute to heat through.  To serve, drizzle each bowl with sriracha, if using.  Taste and adjust the seasonings, if needed. Garnish with basil or cilantro and a sprinkle of sesame seeds, if using.

Makes 2 to 4 servings


NOTE: For the quick, no-oil, Simmer-Everything-Together Method, use the above ingredients (except the oil) and proceed as follows:

Heat the water in a large saucepan.  Add the soy sauce and vegetable soup base or tom yum soup base and bring to a boil.  Add the Nasoya Vegan Dumplings and return the water to a boil for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the ramen noodles, mushrooms, and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook until the noodles and dumplings are tender, about 2 minutes. Add the carrots, and spinach and stir gently until the spinach is wilted. Taste and adjust the seasonings, if needed. Stir in any additional cooked veggies, tofu, or other ingredients, as desired.

Divide the soup into bowls, arranging a few of the dumplings on top of each serving.  Drizzle with a little sriracha, if desired. Garnish with a few Thai basil or cilantro leaves and a sprinkle of sesame seeds, if using.