Sweet Potato Mac and Cheese (Vegan or Paleo options)

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound gluten free elbow macaroni
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup Bob’s Red Mill gluten free all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/3 cup mashed cooked peeled sweet potato, (about 1 medium sweet potato)
  • 3 ½ cups unsweetened almond or coconut milk
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • Fresh black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon coconut aminos or tamari sauce
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice (optional)
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary. If you don’t have fresh rosemary you can add thyme or just add a teaspoon or so of dried Italian seasoning.
  • You can add cooked chicken or ground beef to amp up the protein content or if you just want to make it go a little further.

Instructions:

  1. To cook sweet potato: Peel and cut sweet potato into 2 inch chunks. Add to a pot, cover with water and bring to a broil. Turn heat to medium-low and cook until sweet potato becomes soft. Approximately 15 minutes. Mash and set aside 1 1/3 cup. Alternatively, you can roast the sweet potato which is my preference. It adds a depth of flavor you don’t get with boiling.
  2. Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Add macaroni and cook according to package directions. Drain and return to pot.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, make a ‘paste’ by whisking the olive oil and flour over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes. It will become clumpy.
  4. Add mashed sweet potato, milk, salt, pepper, garlic, mustard, coconut aminos, and lime juice to the saucepan and bring to a slight boil, whisking frequently. Reduce heat to low and let simmer until the sauce thickens, 3-5 minutes.
  5. Whisk until smooth. Some sweet potato chunks may remain. This is fine.
  6. Add rosemary and combine.
  7. Add cooked pasta to the large saucepan and mix well until all ingredients are combined.
  8. Adjust seasonings to taste.
  9. Optional – place pasta and meat (if using) in a 9×13 pan (lined with parchment paper) in a 400-425 degree oven (mine runs hot so I use 400 degrees) for approximately 10-15 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly.

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