Vegan Roasted Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
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5 from 8 votes

Roasted Cauliflower Macaroni and Cheese

Roasted cauliflower adds flavor and nutrients and makes this main-dish vegan mac and cheese more filling. 
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Vegan
Keyword: lighter macaroni and cheese, vegan mac and cheese
Servings: 6
Calories: 317kcal
Author: Susan Voisin


  • 12 ounces small cauliflower florets (about 4 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons aquafaba, vegetable broth, or water
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2-3 cloves garlic pressed or minced
  • 8 ounces uncooked macaroni or other pasta

Cheesy Sauce

  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • 1 cup unsweetened plain soy milk or other plant milk
  • 3/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch (or potato starch)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard (any prepared mustard will do)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 pinch cayenne powder (to taste)
  • black pepper (to taste)

Bread Crumb Topping

  • 1 cup panko (choose a brand with no added oil)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder


  • Preheat oven to 400F. Combine the cauliflower florets in a large bowl with the aquafaba or broth and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the cauliflower on it. Bake for about 15 minutes, until a little tender and beginning to brown on the edges. Stir in the garlic and bake for another minute. Remove from oven and set aside. 
    Roasted Cauliflower
  • While the cauliflower is roasting, cook the macaroni in salted water according to package directions. Drain well and return to the pot. Add the cauliflower to the pot once it is done.
  • Place all sauce ingredients in a blender and blend until combined. Pour the sauce over the macaroni and cauliflower. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring often and scraping the bottom, until sauce boils and thickens. Sauce should be very thick.
  • Check the seasoning and add more salt, pepper, or other spices to taste. You may serve the macaroni at this point or add a topping and bake it as a casserole.

To Bake as a Casserole

  • Preheat oven to 375F. Pour the mac and cheese into a medium-sized casserole dish (the one I used was 6 1/2 x 10 x 2-inches tall.) Combine the topping ingredients and spread it evenly over the top. Bake for about 10 minutes, until top is lightly browned in places. Serve hot, garnished with fresh oregano leaves if you desire.


You can make this soy-free by using any unsweetened, plain plant milk instead of soy. 
Use gluten-free pasta and bread crumbs to make it gluten-free. Check nutritional yeast and other ingredients first to make sure they contain no hidden gluten.
Nutrition Facts below use unsweetened plain Silk soy milk and Private Selection Traditional Panko bread crumbs (100 calories per 1/2 cup.) Using other ingredients will change the nutritional breakdown.
Omitting the panko topping makes this dish 284 calories, 43g carbohydrates, 448 mg sodium, and 20g protein, and 5 WW Freestyle points.
6 Weight Watchers Freestyle points, including topping.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 317kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Sodium: 471mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g