Gluten-Free Plant-Based Kale Mac & “Cheese”
Crunchy on top, creamy throughout, this Plant-Based Kale Mac & “Cheese” is so satisfying! Seriously, is there any dish more comforting on a chilly fall afternoon than warm mac and cheese? I’d eat this any day for lunch with a side salad for extra veggies!
This dish is plant-based thanks to the use of Loca Plant-Based Queso. It’s made with veggies and potatoes, not nuts or soy like other plant-based cheeses often are. It’s probably the best vegan cheese I’ve had. To make sure this stays vegan/plant-based, be sure to use gluten-free vegan croutons. Some croutons might be seasoned with cheese or other non-vegan ingredients, but there’s Olivia’s Croutons and Carrington Farms Crounons that are both GF and vegan. Trust me when I say that the crushed croutons are necessary for the true experience of this dish!
This is a great way to jam-pack some kale into your diet or to get your kids to eat their greens. I don’t think they will say “no” to this mac and cheese!
Plant-Based Kale Mac & “Cheese”
- Kosher or fine sea salt
- 8 cups chopped kale , stems removed
- 12 ounces short cut gluten-free pasta
- 1 (12-ounce) jar Mild Loca Plant-Based Queso
- 4-5 dashes hot sauce , or to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 4 cups gluten-free vegan croutons
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and grease a 9 by 9-inch (or similar) baking dish.
- Blach the kale in the boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon into a large mixing bowl. When the water returns to a boil, add the pasta and cook 2 minutes short of what the cooking directions tell you. Drain, reserving about 1 cup of the pasta cooking water. Add the pasta to the kale along with the queso and hot sauce. Add enough pasta cooking water, a little at a time, to thin the sauce out. Taste and add salt and pepper, if needed. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan.
- Put the croutons in a food storage bag and crush them with a rolling pin. Spread over the top of the casserole and bake for 10-15 minutes or until hot and the croutons are browned.
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