The Best Vegan Gluten-Free Mac ‘n’ Cheese

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Holding up a bite of the best vegan gluten-free mac n cheese recipe on a fork

We recently hosted a friend’s birthday party at our place and much to my surprise (and delight), they served our Garlic Mac ‘n’ Cheese as one of the entrées.

But here’s the thing: They made it completely gluten-free, and somehow, it tasted better than mine. Don’t you hate it when somebody does you better than you?

Not me. I kind of love it. I learned something new!

With a few simple swaps, I knew I’d stumbled upon what truly is thee best vegan, gluten-free mac ‘n’ cheese and I couldn’t help but share. Let’s do this!

Making vegan mac n cheese sauce in a pan

Origins of Mac n Cheese

Mac ‘n’ cheese is the ultimate comfort food! But where did it come from?

It’s believed that the earliest written recipe for a dish resembling mac ‘n’ cheese comes from a 13th century cookbook from southern Italy. The dish (named de lasanis) was made with squares of fermented lasagne dough layered with spices and cheese.

But maybe that’s not what you picture when you hear mac ‘n’ cheese? The dish has been modified in many ways over time!

It’s thought that mac ‘n’ cheese was first introduced in the US when Thomas Jefferson brought back a pasta machine from his travels in Italy. Or perhaps that it originated from a popular New England church dish called macaroni pudding. Then in 1937, Kraft released their boxed mac ‘n’ cheese and it quickly gained popularity because of its affordability.

Our gluten-freeplant-based version has all the comfort but without the wheat and dairy!

Vegan Gluten-Free Mac n Cheese

This recipe is above all, simple. It comes together in about 1 hour (including roasting the garlic), and requires 8 simple ingredients.

I’ve been eating mostly gluten-free lately, and in doing so I’ve discovered the pasta brand Bionaturae, which I’m completely smitten with.

Their penne tastes exactly like “real” gluten penne and doesn’t get gummy or have any weird taste! It truly does pass as the real deal.

Blender with ingredients for the best vegan mac n cheese sauce

The other news to report is arrowroot starch. I’ve been using arrowroot – a natural thickener – in things like my Vegan Lemon Curd to thicken sauces, but when I tried it in pasta sauce, the results were unreal.

Are you guys seeing this? When you begin heating the sauce back up on the stovetop, it gets super thick and a little “stringy” like real cheese! It’s a Christmas miracle (in spring, no less).

Whisking sauce for the best vegan gluten-free mac n cheese

The sauce is a classic roux, with the exception of the arrowroot starch, and olive oil in place of the butter. It gets its flavor from vegan parmesan cheese, nutritional yeast, and fresh and roasted garlic.

The result is mac ‘n’ cheese perfection – no lie.

Pan filled with the best vegan gluten-free macaroni and cheese

I hope you guys LOVE this pasta! It’s:

Ultra creamy
Super cheesy
& Seriously the best

Make this when you want to impress friends with an undetectably vegan and gluten-free pasta! It makes a great weeknight meal or one to save for weekend indulging. Our friends added sautéed kale when adding the pasta, which I loved! Definitely feel free to add in greens of choice for more nutritional benefits.

If you give this a try, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it (once you’ve tried it), and don’t forget to tag a picture #minimalistbaker on Instagram! We’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends!

Pan of freshly cooked vegan gluten-free mac n cheese topped with vegan parmesan cheese

The Best Vegan Gluten-Free Mac ‘n’ Cheese

THE BEST Vegan, Gluten-Free Mac ‘n’ Cheese made with 8 simple ingredients in 1 hour! Cheesy, hearty, and so satisfying.
Author Minimalist Baker
Pan filled with a batch of the Best Vegan Gluten-Free Mac n Cheese
4.88 from 134 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4
Course Entrée
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Italian-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 3 Days


  • 1 head roasted garlic (see instructions for method)
  • 10-12 ounces gluten-free penne* (I love Bionaturae penne found at Whole Foods)
  • 4 Tbsp olive or grape seed oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced (4 cloves yield ~2 Tbsp)
  • 4 1/2 Tbsp arrowroot starch*
  • 2 cups unsweetened plain almond milk (plus more as needed)
  • ~1/4 tsp each sea salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 5 Tbsp nutritional yeast (plus more to taste)
  • 1/2 cup vegan parmesan cheese (plus more for serving)


  • To roast garlic, preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 C) and cut off the very top of a head of garlic. Drizzle the top with a bit of oil, a sprinkle of salt and loosely wrap in foil.
  • Place directly on oven rack and roast for 45 minutes – 1 hour, depending on size of garlic. You’ll know it’s done when the garlic is very fragrant and the bulb is golden brown. Remove from oven, slightly unwrap, and let cool.
  • At the 40-minute mark, bring roughly 10 cups (2400 ml // use more or less if altering batch size) water to a boil in a large pot and salt generously. Once boiling, add pasta and stir to prevent noodles from sticking. Cook according to package instructions (usually about 8-10 minutes). Once fully cooked, drain and set aside.
  • In the meantime, begin preparing sauce. Heat a large, oven-safe skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add oil and minced fresh garlic. Stir and cook for 1-2 minutes, or until light golden brown. Immediately add arrowroot starch and whisk – cook for 1 minute.
  • Slowly add almond milk while whisking, then cook for 2 minutes over medium heat, stirring frequently. The sauce will likely look a little clumpy – that’s OK! We’re going to blend it.
  • Transfer mixture to a blender, along with the roasted garlic. To extract garlic, simply push up from the base and the softened cloves should come right out – so gratifying (and delicious).
  • Next add salt and pepper, nutritional yeast, and vegan parmesan cheese and blend on high until creamy and smooth, scraping down sides as needed.
  • Taste and adjust seasonings as needed – you want it pretty well salted + cheesy, so don’t be shy with the nutritional yeast, salt, and vegan parmesan cheese.
  • Return sauce back to skillet from earlier and cook over low heat until warmed and slightly thickened – about 2-3 minutes – whisking occasionally. As it warms back up, it will thicken and get super cheesy (see photo). For a thicker sauce, leave it as is. To thin slightly, add almond milk 1 Tbsp at a time until desired consistency is achieved. Turn off heat if it starts bubbling too aggressively.
  • Add cooked, drained pasta to the sauce and toss to coat. Then top with 1 more Tbsp vegan parmesan cheese (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).
  • Optional: Heat oven to high broil and position a rack at the top of the oven. Broil pasta on high for 1-2 minutes (optional), or until golden brown (see photo). Watch closely as it can burn quickly.
  • Serve immediately. I love topping mine with an extra pinch of vegan parmesan cheese – I can never get enough of that stuff.
  • Leftovers keep covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, though best when fresh. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop – add extra almond milk if it’s dry.


*If you aren’t gluten-free, sub regular pasta for the gluten-free and all-purpose flour for the arrowroot starch.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without additional parmesan cheese topping.
*Recipe adapted from my Vegan Garlic Mac n Cheese.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 523 Carbohydrates: 67 g Protein: 13.5 g Fat: 23.2 g Saturated Fat: 3.7 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 316 mg Fiber: 8.6 g Sugar: 1.9 g
Grabbing a bite of the most delicious homemade gluten-free vegan mac n cheese

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      • Elisha says

        Would this be ok without the vegan parm? My daughter is allergic to all nuts, soy and peas among others things so store bought doesn’t work either.

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Hi Elisha, we’d suggest using a bit more nutritional yeast if omitting the vegan parm. Hope that helps!

  1. Keri Golding says

    This was a total hit. I have 2 teens gf df and one tween df and their teens so they can be difficult. Eveyone loved it- the garlic was amazing. Next time I am going to add bread crumbs (gf) and broil it for a few minutes to see how that turns out. Loved the creaminess, the taste and the consistency!

  2. Eden says

    If I’m wanting to make this for Thanksgiving, could I prep it in advance? If so, how? Or should it be made on Thanksgiving day? Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Eden! This recipe is definitely best fresh but will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Hope this helps!

  3. Michelle says

    I’m forever skeptical of trying new vegan mac n cheese recipes as I hadn’t found one that’s worth the time to make. However, this recipe did not disappoint. It truly is the best I’ve tried, 100 times better than the ones from the box. Everything about it was on point and I couldn’t recommended enough. Thank you for the recipe!!

  4. Veroma says

    This recipe did not taste cheesy enough until I added So Delicious cheddar cheese into it. Not that I am saying this recipe is bad. Honestly, it is very contrary to bad. But after I added that So Delicious cheddar cheese, it tasted remarkable. I will still use this recipe for future reference, though. Thank you for your time and effort in making this gluten free and vegan macaroni and cheese able to be a reality.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We haven’t tried and can’t say for sure, but if you experiment with it, report back on how it goes! Good luck!

  5. Fran says

    I’m making this for the second time today. First time I followed recipe exactly. This time I will use a little less garlic. I love garlic but the flavor was a bit strong even for me!
    Recipe is definitely a keeper! Thanks!

  6. Deb says

    I was wondering if I could make this in the morning and pop it in a baking dish then oven heat it for a luncheon?
    Should I make it a little juicier so if it absorbs it will still be saucy..?

  7. Lauren says

    I absolutely love this mac!!! I made it for a party & even the non-vegans were amazed by it. I’m not gluten free, so I subbed the gluten free pasta with regular pasta and the arrowroot starch for flour and a little bit of cornstarch for the thickness. I also added breadcrumbs on the top…because breadcrumbs are life.

  8. Bethany Bolthouse says

    I made this for dinner tonight and WOW. It is hands down the best mac’n’cheese I have made since going vegan, and the first one that feels worth writing down and saving. I love that it’s a rue; that’s how my mom always made homemade mac’n’cheese growing up. Thank you!

  9. Sophia says

    Absolutely LOVED this recipe. Totally satisfied my Mac n cheese craving and will 100 % make again. After I had some leftover “cheese” sauce and added some other spices and tomatoes for a mock queso dip that was also delicious

  10. JacqueB says

    This was amazing…and versatile! Made the pasta and added about half of bag of frozen peas towards the end of cook time and sauted some baby bellas in olive oil and garlic and added to pasta after it was drained. Made the sauce as directed and added to pasta with a few good shakes of cayenne to spice it up a bit. Delicious, filling, comfort food. I’m new to plant based eating, and this is a solid recipe I will come back to! I imagine there are many sauted veggie add-ins that would be amazing (asparagus, peppers, sun-dried tomatoes and spinach…). Thank you!

  11. Crystal McQuinn says

    Just made , I’m pretty happy with it added a Lil apple cider , this is the one vegan thing I’ve had trouble giving up is cheese so I think this will help wean me off it .
    Thanks for the recipie

  12. Elaina says

    Easily the best vegan mac and cheese I’ve ever had! A lot of steps to make it, but none of them are complicated. Will be remaking this whenever my non-vegan friends come over!

  13. Rebecca S. says

    I’m crazy excited to give this a try! I have also been trying to eat less gluten. Thanks for the noodle tip. I’ve come to really like Banza, but it has to be “overbooked” I’m order to get the right consistency. This all looks and sounds very exciting! Thanks Dana!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi! You could try subbing more garlic powder? Unfortunately it’s a key ingredient that makes the dish “cheesy.”

  14. Eva says

    Hi! I need to make a huge portion of this for a party – how do I make it in advance? Can I combine all and reheat in the oven or is it best to keep the sauce and pasta separate? Need to know soon as this may save my butt for a weekend bash. Thank you!!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Eva! You can really do either option, but if it is easier to make ahead and assemble, that will work just fine!

  15. Sarah says

    I just made this for my 3 year old who demanded mac and cheese for dinner. I ruined the roasted gatlic and was short on arrowroot and vegan parm. And it was still freaking delicious. Ive tried several vegan cheeses and this may be my favorite. My child says “mmmm tastes good to me!” Will use again!

  16. Dantor says

    Really great recipe, easy to make and delicious! I was dubious when I first was making the sauce with the arrowroot and it’s strange texture but a minute with the stick blender made it so creamy and beautiful. I am on the fodmaps diet so replaced the roasted garlic with garlic oil.

  17. Isabella says

    I made this last night with some friends, and it turned out so well. Yummy, cheesy, and cruelty-free :)

    • Beck says

      Omg I’m sorry, I can’t type.. I meant to say I don’t have garlic to roast, will the dish still be tasty without it.

      • Beck says

        I added quarter of a pumpkin and some sage & thyme so kind of mixed the two recipes together! Not sure what it’s supposed to taste like but I’m pretty happy with it!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      As mentioned in other comments, we recommend it as it contributes to the ‘cheesy’ flavor but is not required.

  18. Maddison says

    Ooh I’m excited to try this! Gotta give it a test drive before I move in with my fiancé! He’s so not used to eating gluten free or dairy free, which he doesn’t have to. It’s my food requirements! Lol I’ve been looking for god comfort food recipes that I know he loves and I can make and still be able to eat! Looks so yummy!

    I wanted to note for people who are asking what to replace arrowroot with, you can use cornstarch but if you don’t eat corn – tapioca starch is the bomb for thickening if you don’t have arrowroot!

  19. kaitlyn says

    This is the BEST vegan Mac n cheese i’ve ever had!! Even better than a place in NYC i went to just to try theirs! Thanks so much, you rock!

  20. Taylor says

    Another perfect recipe from Minimalist Baker! Great for those comfort food cravings. I found it very filling and as much as I wanted to eat seconds I was FULL (I’ve been known to go back for seconds…… thirds….) Luckily the leftovers heat up wonderfully! So yum.

  21. Dan says

    Made this today and everyone liked it. A good substitute for our family with dietary restrictions. I also made the recipe easier by estimating the ingredients needed to make 1/2 c of the dairy-free parm, and just added it straight to the blender instead of making the parm separate. Saved time.

  22. Jamie says

    I have been looking for a good recipe for my wife as she is gluten and dairy intolerant. She said this the best gluten and dairy free Mac and cheese she has ever had. I enjoyed myself.

  23. lesli a mcmillan says

    I was going to make this recipe as a meal for a friend. Do you think it would serve well baking as a casserole after the initial cooking? Say a quick reheat 400 for 15 min?



  24. whispersierra says

    Can I use gluten-free xanthan gum instead of arrowroot? I also have cornstarch. Which would give a better texture? Thanks!

  25. Ann Opinion says

    We enjoyed the recipe.

    A couple things:
    We have a cashew allergy in our house so I substituted macadamia nuts to make the parmesan this time and it worked fine. I’ve found walnuts worked better though when I made vegan parmesan before. Next time I’ll give brazil nuts a try.

    We enjoyed turning this recipe into truffle mac by drizzling truffle oil and topping with toasted “crumbs” made from heating olive oil, minced garlic, almond flour, salt and pepper and toasting on stove top . I’ve personally found Bob’s Red Mill almond flour works better for making “crumbs” than the Wellbees because the Wellbees is quite fine.

  26. Teresa says

    Hi. Thanks for this great recipe. I am a huge fan of baked mac n cheese with a crusty top. Could I bake this recipe at a low temp (maybe 350 degrees) for about 20 minutes and still get a good result? Would I maybe need to increase the amount of sauce? Thank you!

  27. Christina says

    I made this last night for dinner and it was fantastic! I ended up putting a couple dashes of chipotle hot sauce and it really bumped up the flavour. I also used corn starch instead of arrowroot, and though it didn’t have the “stringy” magic texture, it still worked out really well. Will definitely be remaking this in the future!

  28. natasha says

    i followed the recipe to the T and my sauce doesn’t taste right. It doesn’t taste cheesy, its almost chalky. how can I fix?

  29. Pooja says

    Helloo I made this for dinner tonigh – my fussy 4 year old said let me try a bite and wanted it for dinner over what I had actually prepared for him lol so yummy – I used brown rice flour instead of arrowroot

  30. Sofi says

    Of course it doesn’t taste EXACTLY like dairy/gluten mac and cheese, but it’s pretty damn close and really delicious! And easy to make!
    I just had to give up both a couple weeks ago, so it’s not like I’ve been doing this for years. Makes me feel a lot better that there are options like this. Thanks Dana!!

  31. Shelby says

    This is an easy weeknight dinner recipe. I didn’t both blending and it was fine, but would have been better blended. The arrowroot powder def gives it a ‘cheesy’ texture. I added some veg and it made a delicious dinner.

  32. Brittany says

    I am allergic to garlic. Can I make it without it or would you recommend a different aromatic/flavor in its place?

    Thank you! – Brittany

  33. Allison says

    Hi Dana!
    Could you freeze the sauce? I would like to make a couple batches a thing once and freeze to have on hand for quicker dinners. Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Allison! We haven’t tried freezing it so we can’t say for sure, but it should work. Let us know how it goes!

  34. Jenn Allen says

    I am a newer vegan and so I am very determined to find delicious recipes for my family (including my carnivore members especially) that they love! While I did not make this recipe gluten free, I want you to know Dana, it was GONE!!! I have made it twice, and the second time my 19 year old son had a friend here visiting and he loved it!! It is a huge hit and there are never leftovers. Thank you so much for your awesome recipes that taste AMAZING!!! I am so grateful for your site and am researching it daily for my next amazing vegan meal!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi! You could try subbing more garlic powder? Unfortunately it’s a key ingredient that makes the dish “cheesy.”

    • curious vegan says

      Maybe a No Chick’n bullion cube, and some ground golden flaxseed, or maybe vegan powdered egg substitute?

  35. Katie Gallagher says

    Great consistency! We added a tsp and a half of Dijon mustard and a pinch of cayenne pepper (also Siracha if you want more spice). This made it SUPER good. We didn’t get to use our preferred brand of vegan parm, but it worked out just as well. Thank you!

  36. Amanda says

    I’ve tried this recipe a few times and no matter what, it always tastes like something is missing. Mac and cheese has always been my favorite food, and I’ve been trying to go vegan but haven’t found a recipe yet that tastes as good as the real thing. Any tips or comments to help with this dilemma?

  37. Gateaa says

    Made this last night and LOVED it. When I was putting everything into the blender, I added some dry Italian herbs and crushed red pepper. DIVINE. Hands down the best mac n’ cheese I’ve ever had!

  38. Francisca Martinez says

    Thank you for sharing your recipe, my partner and I loved it!!! I already had some store bought Vegan Parmesan (cashew based) so I didn’t have to make my own but next time I will use your recipe and make my own. I would definitely recommend this mac and cheese recipe and will be making it again soon.

  39. sarah giordano says

    Made this last night and YUM! i definitely got the garlic hits in the sauce, and the creaminess was unbelievable. But it didn’t really get the cheesiness factor. i wonder if anyone has tried adding something for that “tang” … lemon juice or apple cider vinegar maybe?

  40. Marie Butcher says

    OMG!!!!!! I’ve made other vegan mac and cheese, they’re good, but this… this is fantastic. I did add a little bit (may 1/4 C) of vegan cheddar, and I didn’t roast the garlic, I just didn’t want to take the time. I sauteed the garlic with some shallot in veggie broth first then followed the recipe from there. I just ate the little bit of leftover there was- it’s great re-heated as well. I plan on taking this to work next week to share with everyone along with the lentil sloppy Joe’s. They all know I’m vegan, but they will be impressed with this. Thanks for another great recipe!!!!!

  41. Lynn says

    Just made this recipe for the 2nd time. It was a hit with my vegan in-laws and meat-eating family alike. It’s so gooey and “cheesy” it’s amazing. Great recipe that I will put in my recipe box. Thanks!

  42. Jake says

    This recipe is phenomenal. I went old school and topped it with panko breadcrumbs and some tomato slices then popped it in a hot over. Served with roasted beetroot and your basil pesto. Deffinately a keeper!

  43. Fionna says

    wow this was amazing! my husband had no idea it was vegan. you best vegan recipes!! thank you and keep on sharing!!

  44. Dani says

    This is great if you love garlic, which I do. This was like a garlic alfredo sauce. My kids were not super impressed unfortunately. The texture of the sauce was fantastic, but I think my kids were looking for something closer to what they were used to before we became vegan.

  45. Sammy says

    Myself and my non-vegan family enjoyed this dish! I did not use any oil, instead using broth to cook the garlic, adding more than the 4 tbsp as needed. It did get clumpy with the arrowroot, but was perfectly smooth after blending (leaving out the oil removes nearly 500 calories and 56 grams of fat from the dish, which is awesome!)

    We didn’t find the garlic overpowering at all. If anything, I think more garlic would only make it even better! We generously added more vegan parm on top, along with paprika, and broiled it for a few minutes which made the dish even yummier. We also used 1 cup homemade almond milk and 1 cup soy milk, and the consistency of the sauce was perfect.

  46. creativeholly says

    I just made this tonight. Perfect texture (arrowroot is amazing), but the garlic was INSANE. We eat a lot of garlic, but a head plus 4 more cloves—it really overpowered the cheesy yeast flavor for my family. Has anyone made this with less garlic? I wonder why so much…maybe the flavor isn’t great without it? Can you smell my breath? ?

  47. Michelle says

    Made this over the past weekend and it was indeed delicious. Ended up adding extra yeast, salt, and pepper, along with some cumin, smoked paprika, and Dijon mustard… My husband said he honestly thought it was actual creamy cheese sauce until I told him otherwise.

    Unfortunately I discovered that large amounts of nutritional yeast do not sit will in my tummy. Think I’ll try your Eggplant Mac next!

  48. Sabra says

    The texture of the sauce was amazing. I made the regular version using flour. It was yum and creamy but wayyyyy too much garlic for my liking. Next time i will just add the roasted garlic and not add sauteed garlic too.

  49. Rebecca says

    YES. This was a delicious, smooth, cheesy sauce. I skipped the pasta and used it on some steamed broccoli. Once you have your head of garlic roasted, this sauce from pan to blender is very easy and quick to make.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Deb! I dont think coconut milk would taste quite right, but would recommend rice milk!

  50. Juliana Thiels says

    I made this tonight and it was so good!! I subsituted the arrow root starch for corn starch because I had that in the pantry and it worked well. Also added sautéed spinach and sun dried tomatoes. Thank you!

  51. Emily Mitchell says

    Made this for Easter dinner for my non-vegan family and they all really liked it! We all thought the texture and consistency of the sauce was the best part, and I agree, it was perfectly creamy and spot on like a dairy Mac and cheese. I thought it was pretty cheesy, the rest of gang thought it just tasted like a really good garlic sauce, but I will definitely want to make this again in the future! Thanks for the recipe!

  52. Dina says

    Made this for Easter. 3 vegans and 2 non vegans and the praise all around was amazing. This is such a great dish. Comes out just like the pics and was easy to make.

  53. Kara says

    Do you think this would freeze well? I’m batch cooking before popping this. And out and would love to have a stash of this in my freezer!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Kara! We haven’t tried freezing this one! If you give it a try, report back on how it goes :D

    • Erin says

      Have you tried freezing it? Would love to make this ahead to bring on camping trip, but not sure how freezing it would turn out!

  54. Maggie says

    I made the last week and everything was going great until I added my ingredients into the blender. I’m not sure if maybe I burned the roasted garlic or if using agar agar powder instead of starch was the cause of the problem. It almost had a chemical flavor to it and I was so disappointed to throw it away. I never waste food even if its slightly funky tasting but I couldn’t seem to salvage this recipe. Such a waste :-( I wonder where I went wrong. Any ideas?

  55. Anna says

    This was so delicious! I JUST made it! I halved the measurements since I was just making a serving for myself, but holy cats! I had all the ingredients on hand and it was super easy. Thanks for this mac and cheese for the win! I love enjoying food that tastes good but doesn’t make me feeling yucky afterwards.

  56. Victoria says

    I made this recipe last week and it was so delicious! The husband is now hooked on using nutritional yeast for cheesy sauces as a healthy alternative even though he isn’t vegan. Will definitely stow this recipe away to make again! Thanks!

  57. Laura Bassett says

    Gurrrrl. This is one of my favorite go-to recipes! It is ideal for showing friends and family that vegan meals are just as (and often MORE) delicious than those with animal products – I’ve only every received raving reviews when I’ve made it. I have also been experimenting with this cheese sauce with more than just mac n’ cheese… We’ve used it for a delicious broccoli-rice-casserole, as a cheese sauce substitute for a baked potato night at our weekly potluck, and I’ve got queso on my mind for the near future… Thank you for this recipe and all the others that have become staples in my home.

  58. REBECCA says

    Has anyone tried making this with soy milk? I can’t drink almond milk, it gives me an extreme stomach ache, I think I’m slightly allergic to them in such a high concentration.

  59. Jenn Swanson says

    I’m allergic to nuts, and so have trouble with a lot of vegan recipes that call for it. A few questions:
    1. can I use something other than almond milk? (Can’t do soy either.) Would hemp milk or rice milk or coconut milk work?
    2. can’t make the cashew cheese…what other subs might there be? Or can you buy vegan parmesan that is not made from nuts?

    I want to make this tonight…looks incredible and the kids LOVE mac and cheese but two of us now can’t eat dairy or gluten, so this might just be the ticket. Thank you!

    • APC says

      Hi! We are in the same boat. I can’t have tree nuts, peanuts, gluten or dairy so I’m curious if you found a solution…I’m going to attempt vegan mac n cheese this weekend either way!

  60. Kristin M. says

    This was SO DELICIOUS !!! I added some sliced prosciutto (I know, eliminates the vegan part) as well, but overall the whole thing was SO GOOD. Can’t believe how “cheesy” it was!

  61. Vanessa | THE REAL LIFE Blog says

    My boyfriend Nick and I just tried this recipe last night! We added broccoli into the mix and somehow forgot to add the starch until the blending phase… but it still worked out MARVELOUSLY. So creamy and delicious. Thanks!

  62. Jade says

    What brand of nutritional yeast do you suggest? I have braggs and it has a strange aftertaste. :/ maybe I just don’t like nutritional yeast. Is there a way to make it without it?

  63. Lauren says

    Hi Dana! How do you think this would taste if I used hemp or flax milk? Or can you recommend something other than almond, coconut or soy milk :(? I have to avoid those for 4 months due to sensitivity. It’s tough.

  64. Samantha says

    Hi there! I really want to make this but I recently just got a lot of dietary restrictions and I can’t have yeast. Is there anything I can substitute for that? I didn’t see it in your FAQs!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Samantha! You may want to make sure you can’t actually have nutritional yeast as it’s different than brewers or baking yeast. Otherwise you could try subbing more garlic powder? Unfortunately it’s a key ingredient that makes the dish “cheesy.”

    • curious vegan says

      Ii wonder if one Edward & Sons No Chick’n bullion cube, diluted in the plant beverage, and thickened with non GMO corn starch, would work instead of the yeast. Also, turmeric as a more cheddar color colorant.

  65. Felicia says


    I have made 4 vegan mac and cheese recipes.. all of which I tried and was not a fan of. UNTIL YESTERDAY! I made this yesterday to bring to a superbowl party and it was the BEST recipe I have tried. Since going vegan Mac and Cheese is what I have missed and this recipe killed the craving! Came together in an hour just as the recipe says and was freaking delicious!!! im not going to lie I may have eaten a solid 1/3 of it hahah. THANK YOU so much for all your amazing recipes, each one ive tried has been the bom dot com!

  66. R says

    I have made this before for my classroom. We have a student with gluten sensitivities and a very strict diet and the kids loved it.

    I made it again and substituted water for almond milk and it works. I think I might like the texture better than with the almond milk, but I did add more nutritional yeast. The parmesan was the same.

    Thank you!! Great recipe.

  67. Christina Nuncio says

    Didn’t make it gluten free and used some Daiya cheddar instead of all parm also less garlic since I had to “roast” it chopped up but overall fantastic recipe I made it alongside your jackfruit BBQ sandwiches and it was amazing I made another macaroni along side it, it was good but this one was way more of a hit!!

  68. Kellie says

    This is very creamy and satisfying. I’ll definitely make it again, but I probably won’t put the roasted garlic in it. I love garlic, but it was too much for me, to the point where I may have to toss out the leftovers. I don’t think this is something I should eat while I’m at work! Having said that I think the cheese sauce without the roasted garlic willl make a great cheese sauce for a lot of things, as others have said. Thanks for a great recipe!

  69. Beth Ann Skeen says

    Holy mother of all that’s good and sacred in the south. I have discovered the holy grail for a southern not eating cheese. ? (ok, I stumbled onto YOUR recipe ) I’m from the south and to a true southerner, mac & cheese is sacred stuff & In our house, “perfect” Mac & Cheese means it can’t taste “vegan” or “healthy” & you do NOT play around with it… no “strange unidentifiable ingredients” (Marcus’s words) or fancy side additions that top chefs from the Food Channel will often ruin a good old fashion southern PLAIN Mac & Cheese with. I’ve been vegan since 2013 and have NEVER found a recipe that meant much to my family. Certainly anything worth repeating.
    We’ve got company coming in throughout the weekend so last night I was experimenting with your “The best vegan gluten free Mac & Cheese” recipe and it is without doubt a baby Jesus miracle! I have to say the best I’ve ever attempted & hands down a winner in our house! Absolutely delicious! In the beginning the cheese sauce was a bit thick (i had to had more of the almond milk) and I kept envisioning future sauce for baked potatoes, nachos, over steamed veggies, etc. So I really felt like I hit gold! Thank you for providing this site I’ve gone to time and time again (& I’m sorry I’m just now taking the time to say something) but most importantly, thank you for this recipe!

    • Kellie says

      Haha! Your review made me laugh. I’m about to make this for myself for dinner tonight. The rest of the family is having the sacrosanct real Canadian Mac and cheese (and don’t mess with it mom…). All of these reviews are giving me hope!

  70. mary e. from Ohio says

    Hi, someone else asked this, but I’m going to re-ask (cause there was no response) is there really 316 GRAMS of sodium in this, as stated, is did you mean MILLIgrams? If it truly is 316 grams then maybe a serving size should be half the current size? :D That’s a lot of salt!
    I’ve not tried this yet, but I do plan to try it soon, as I’m really trying to eat more plant-based.

  71. Anastasia says

    Dear Dana,
    I LOVE YOU! I recently turned vegan and gluten free due to some health issues and I have been struggling in the kitchen. I just ate a huge bowl of this amazing pasta and I couldn’t be more satisfied. I played around with your recipe a bit to adjust it to my taste (mushrooms, parsley, onion instead of garlic) and now I have one full and happy belly. Thank you thank you thank you, excellent recipe! I will be stalking you from now on!

  72. Rrrrr says

    WOW! I rarely Leave comments but I had to for this one.

    I work in a school – one of our kiddos has a special diet, so we made everything gluten free so that he could participate in our Christmas feast! Even the kids who love “regular” mac and cheese loved it. Kid taste tested and approved.

    By far the best vegan mac and cheese recipe I have made. It took a lot of willpower to not Eat the cheesy sauce by itself. Thank you!!!!

    • Rrrrr says

      I soiod also like to add that i made this the night before with regular elbow pasta and gluten free elbow pasta. The texture upon reheating in the microwave the next day was still smooth. AMAZING!

  73. Stephanie says

    Hi! My mother is currently battling cancer and has cut out every bit of “junk” food right now. I’d love to make a few dishes for her for Thanksgiving for her to still enjoy and this fits the bill and looks heavenly!!! My question is: Do you know if this holds up well as a roux and as noodles *separately* that I can just mix together and warm when ready? Due to busy kitchen with all of the “traditional” food I plan on making a few small sides at my sister’s house the morning of and then driving 30 minutes to the actual meal. Thanks so much!

  74. coreen says

    what vegan parmesan cheese brand was used or recommended in this recipe?
    We love macn n cheese from veggie grill, i hope it will taste like taht

  75. Elizabeth says

    The bio nature pasta she recommends is awesome! It’s got the same texture of the regular penne. Thank you!!!!
    It was super thick and cheesy just like I hoped. I might opt for less nutritional yeast next time personally but even so it was epic and addictive! I’m still trying to find ways to indulge with my restrictions that aren’t super difficult or pricey. This was perfect~~Thank you so much!