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Photo by Hermes Rivera on Unsplash
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This surprising ingredient will take your vegan mac and cheese to the next level

Game. Changer.


It may only be the first full week of 2021 but it's been a distressing one, to say the least. Find comfort in the little things, like a warming bowl of mac and cheese. And better yet, this recipe is dairy-free!

When you picture vegan food, what do you see? Kale, brightly coloured fruits and some alternative grains? For many, this diet is probably a reality most of the time, but vegans need comfort food too. If the cold weather has caused you to crave mac and cheese, like we are right now, then you'll be delighted to hear that we have found the secret ingredient to making the perfect vegan pasta sauce. 

The key is white beans.

Yes, you read that correctly, white beans are the secret ingredient necessary for the perfect vegan macaroni and cheese. When you blitz them up, white beans take on a silky, thick consistency similar to that of a roux-based milk sauce. While cashews can often do the same job, they're not always a suitable substitute as many people have nut allergies.

Making the perfect vegan mac and cheese is surprisingly simple, so if you want to try it out for yourself, check out the recipe below 

Photo by Heather Gill on Unsplash
Photo by Heather Gill on Unsplash

Perfect vegan mac and cheese sauce

Serves four

  • 1 tin cannellini beans drained and rinsed
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 180ml unsweetened oat milk or coconut milk
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 400g freshly cooked macaroni or other pasta
  • Vegan cheese or nutritional yeast, we like to use a combination of both soft vegan cheese and imitation cheddar


  1. Add the beans, garlic and milk to a blender and blitz until smooth.
  2. Taste the mix and add salt and pepper as required. 
  3. Pour the sauce over the still-warm pasta in a pot over a low heat. Mix in a handful of cheese and stir through the pasta. The cheese will melt into the sauce over the heat. Taste and add more cheese and seasoning if necessary.

TIP: This sauce is best eaten fresh as it tends to dry out a little. If you want to save it for another time, store the sauce and pasta separately in your fridge, then reheat the sauce with a little more oat milk ahead of serving. 

READ MORE: 3 vegan recipes to inspire you this Veganuary