One of the biggest difficulties of eating vegan (at least most of the time) is resisting the urge to indulge in warm, cheesy comfort foods like potatoes au gratin or mac n' cheese. They're just the type of meal that you get excited to eat and feel so cozy to tuck into! Not to mention the mass appeal to friends and family, which make these dishes perfect for potlucks and holiday dinners.
Well, instead of feeling left out the next time your Uncle brings his famous mac n' cheese casserole, now you get to be the star of the potluck party with this cheezey cashew sauce! Not only is it incredibly easy to make and insanely delicious, this cheezey sauce is also actually healthy. You see, it's jam packed with real vegetables and spices that deliver a punch of savory flavor along with a whole host of feel-good nutrients.
This cheezey cashew magic is perfect for mac n' cheese casseroles, with it's thick, creamy texture (thank you cashews, for existing) and bright yellow color (thank you, also, turmeric, for existing). If your cravings are anything like mine, you're probably going to find it hard to put your fork down once you've tasted this stuff. So far, I've been more than happy to chow down on my saucey macaroni noodles, but I'm planning to try this sauce with potatoes and rice, too. The savory possibilities are endless, and this cheezey goodness is still light enough to be enticing throughout the warmer months, too. So, you're welcome ;)
Cheezey Cashew Sauce
Prep time: 20 minutes. Cook time: 30 minutes.
Ingredients for 8-10 servings of sauce (about 1 large casserole):
- 1/3 cup raw cashews, soaked for at least 20 minutes (and up to 12 hours)
- 1 medium yellow potato
- 1 small yellow onion
- 2 carrots (go with orange, not purple or otherwise)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 cups water
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional, but a great idea)
- If not soaked already, put cashews in a bowl and cover completely with warm water.
- Wash potato and carrots, skin garlic and onion. Chop all in half.
- Bring a small pot of (2 cups) water to a boil. Add vegetables and 1 tsp salt.
- Boil until vegetables are totally soft, you should be able to poke a fork clean through the potato with little to no resistance. Once soft, turn off heat and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Drain and rinse cashews. Add to blender, then, using a slotted spoon, add vegetables to blender. Pour in a small amount (about 1/2 cup) of the cooking water into the blender as well. Blend on high for 1 minute.
- Add turmeric, nutritional yeast, pepper and the rest of the salt. If your mixture is already blending smoothly, you won't need to add any additional water. If you'd like a smoother or more liquid sauce, add more water 1/2 cup at a time and blend in 1 minute intervals until desired consistency is reached.
- If eating immediately, pour and enjoy! You can also store this for up to a week in the fridge or a month in the freezer. Just reheat in a saucepan and mix thoroughly.