I used to say that the only mac & cheese I would eat was the kind from the blue box—as a once-in-a-while, “I know what kind of food dye/preservative hell I am getting myself into” sort of thing. Well, I also used to be afraid of lobsters. Things change. lobster

It all started a few years ago, when I started seeing recipes for mac & cheese featuring cheese sauce made from butternut squash, pumpkin, nutritional yeast, and other unconventional ingredients. Though I still buy organic boxed stuff from companies like Annie’s once in a while, I much prefer to make my own cheese sauce—the mad scientist aspect makes it so much more satisfying.

After seeing this recipe on Angela’s blog and a great adaptation on Katie’s blog, mac &cheese was moved to the top of my “Must Make Soon” list.  I’d also been eyeing the bag oflangostino tails in my freezer. Lobster mac & cheese is totally a thing, so yeah…langostino tails

Aside from being delicious, this also happens to be dairy-free and low in fat—not to mention high in protein, fiber, and vitamins A, C, and K. Not too shabby, huh?

For the sauce:

  • 1 package tofu (silken is probably best, but I got away with firm, since that’s what I had)
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • Garlic powder
  • Sea salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp liquid smoke (optional but lovely)
  • ~1/2 cup water (may need more or less)

For the “mac” part of the meal:

  • 3/4 c Whole wheat pasta of choice
  • 1 large handful kale
  • ~1/2 c frozen peas, thawed
  • ~1 c frozen langostino tails, thawed


  1. Combine sauce ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth and pour into a glass jar. Done. Makes about 3 cups.
  2. Boil pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving a tiny bit of the starchy pasta water if desired.
  3. Return pot with pasta in it to heat. Add kale, peas, langostino tails, and about 1 cup of sauce. Stir until everything is well coated and sauce is hot.
  4. Serve immediately.

Serves 1 

You can use the extra sauce another time or kindly allow a friend or mate to have some.

Oh, and about that food dye hell, did you hear about Kraft’s new plans for their shaped mac & cheese products?

Do you like boxed mac & cheese, or do you prefer to make your own? Any favorite recipes? 

Hungry for more?

Subscribe to get the latest nutrition information, self-care strategies, and healthy living tips delivered right to your inbox.

Powered by ConvertKit