This vegan butternut squash mac and cheese recipe is gluten and dairy free, and is compliant with the elimination diet, low acid diet, and low oxalate diet.

Although this recipe does not contain any actual cheese, vegan or not, the butternut squash and nutritional yeast give this recipe it’s rich orange cheesy feel.

Below I also include instructions on how to make this recipe lower calorie/fat, paleo and autoimmune paleo (AIP) friendly, and lower in oxalates.

Product brands I recommend for this recipe

  • Barista oat milk by Earth’s Own – This stuff is super creamy and satisfying, and can be made with either savoury or sweet recipes.
  • Bob’s Red Mill nutritional yeast
  • Real Salt

Equipment you will need for this recipe

  • Large cast-iron skillet
  • Large pot
  • Wooden spoon
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Stove, hotplate or induction burner
  • Strainer 
  • Food processor or blender
Two servings of mac and cheese from the front

Recipe substitutions or variations

Substitutions:

Oat milk substitutions: Instead of using oat milk, you can swap it out for any other dairy free milk alternatives such as coconut milk, almond milk, cashew milk, macadamia milk etc.

Garlic infused olive oil substitutions: feel free to use regular olive oil in this recipe. If you still want the garlic flavour though, you can add one or two diced fresh garlic cloves or half a teaspoon of garlic powder.

Gluten-free pasta substitutions: if you aren’t able to get gluten-free macaroni noodles, you can swap it out for any other gluten-free pasta. Or if you want to make this recipe lower carb, you can use konjac noodles or cauliflower rice.

Frozen butternut squash substitutions: if you aren’t able to get cubed frozen butternut squash, feel free to buy fresh butternut squash instead. You’ll just have to peel it, scrape out the seeds and cut it up yourself.

Variations:

Make this recipe lower calorie/fat: Reduce the amount of olive oil from 2 tablespoons down to 1 tablespoon or less.

Make this recipe paleo & AIP friendly: Swap out the oat milk for coconut milk, and swap the gluten-free pasta for cauliflower rice.

Make this recipe lower oxalate: rather than using oat milk, swap it out for coconut milk. Make sure your pasta is rice based, or use cauliflower rice.

Add more flavour to this recipe: Consider adding ½ teaspoon of onion powder and ½ teaspoon of garlic powder. Or alternatively use ¼ cup fresh diced onion and two fresh garlic cloves. 

Overhead view of two servings of mac and cheese

Recipe pairing ideas

Include this vegan mac and cheese in a balanced meal: Fill one quarter of your plate with protein of your choice, one quarter of your plate with mac and cheese, and half your plate with unlimited vegetables or salad.

Add roasted broccoli: there is nothing like broccoli and cheese. If you want to add a little bit of extra nutrition and fiber, mix in some roasted broccoli.

Add bacon: if you are only avoiding dairy and you still eat meat, try adding homemade bacon bits to this mac and cheese. As you know, bacon goes with everything!

Recipe FAQs

How can I make the mac & cheese sauce thicker?

Depending on how much liquid comes out of the butternut squash, and how thick or thin your dairy free milk is, you may find that the sauce is not thick enough. If this happens, transfer it back into your pan after blending it and bring it back up to a simmer. Mix 1 tablespoon of potato starch or tapioca starch into ¼ cup of dairy free milk. Pour this mixture into your simmering sauce and whisk until your sauce thickens up. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Does this vegan mac & cheese freeze well?

Unfortunately it does not freeze super well. The first time I made this, I froze some additional portions and each time I thawed them and reheated them, they were quite mushy and had lost a lot of their flavour. I suggest storing your leftovers in the fridge and eating up within a couple days. If you plan on freezing your leftovers, try cooking your pasta al dente (undercook them slightly) and see if that helps.

Looking for more healthy recipes and meal plans?

If you are looking for more healthy recipes and meal plans, check out my premade meal plans and recipe books (which come with 140 recipes for breakfasts, lunches, dinners, snacks & desserts). 

I also provide fully customized meal plans that are unique to your specific health needs, as well as one-on-one health coaching and professional grade supplements.

Pin this recipe for later

If you can’t make my vegan butternut squash mac and cheese now, make sure to pin the recipe for later so you have it handy!

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Tried this recipe?

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Two servings of mac and cheese dish

Butternut squash mac and cheese (vegan)

Tara Klippert
This vegan butternut squash mac and cheese recipe is gluten and dairy free, and is compliant with the elimination diet, low acid diet, and low oxalate diet.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Lunch, Main Course, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 202 kcal

Equipment

  • Large cast-iron skillet
  • Large pot
  • Wooden spoon
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Stove, hotplate or induction burner
  • Strainer
  • Food processor or blender

Ingredients
  

  • 400 g cubed frozen butternut squash (roughly 2.5 cups)
  • 2 tbsp garlic infused olive oil
  • 1 cup oat milk (or other dairy free milk of choice)
  • 4 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 150 g gluten-free macaroni (roughly 1.5 cups)

Instructions
 

  • Heat your pan to medium heat and add 2 tablespoons of garlic infused olive oil.
  • Add frozen butternut squash cubes.
  • Cook until butternut squash is fully thawed and cooked through, stirring often.
  • While your butternut squash is cooking, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt the water generously and add your gluten-free pasta, stirring often until cooked through. Follow the instructions on the packaging and be careful not to overcook.
  • Add oat milk, nutritional yeast and ½ teaspoon salt to your butternut squash.
  • Continue cooking until all the flavours have started combining, around five minutes. Stir often. Turn the heat off and let the butternut squash mixture cool down a bit.
  • At this point your pasta will likely be done. Strain your pasta and set aside.
  • Once your butternut squash mixture has cooled a bit, transfer it into a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.
  • Add your sauce to your cooked pasta and stir everything together.
  • Serve immediately.

Notes

In the blog post above, I also include instructions on how to make this recipe lower calorie/fat, paleo and autoimmune paleo (AIP) friendly, and lower in oxalates.

Nutrition

Serving: 6gCalories: 202kcalCarbohydrates: 32.6gProtein: 4.8gFat: 6.5gSaturated Fat: 0.9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4.1gSodium: 200mgPotassium: 338.5mgFiber: 2.6gSugar: 2.9g
Keyword AIP, dairy free, gluten free, low fat, low oxalate, soy free, sugar free, vegan
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Tara Klippert
About the author Tara Klippert

Tara Klippert is a Registered Health and Nutrition Counselor and holds a diploma in Holistic Nutrition and Health Coaching. Tara helps people clear up cystic acne, balance hormones and blood sugar + improve anxiety and gut health NATURALLY with food.