Crispy Bread Topped Mac and Cheese

When I’m planning my menu for Christmas Day, I like to make sure I’m using the oven as little as possible. Not only is it really hot to use here in Australia, there is just only so much space in an oven! Unless you’re lucky enough to have a double oven, I find that you end up spending Christmas morning juggling things in and out of the oven. Or you end up with your kitchen benches covered in electric ovens and fry pans in an effort to get it all cooked.

This Mac and Cheese Recipe is great because you can put it together the day before, and then just crisp up the bread topping in the oven for 15 minutes before serving.

This recipe uses Instant Cashew Cheese for a richer sauce than my Extra Veg Mac and Cheese. It is also faster and simpler to make – perfect for a busy Christmas Day!

The crumbled bread topping is thick and crunchy – crunchier than you get when you just use breadcrumbs. Don’t worry if the bread is a little soft as you crumble it over the top. It will crisp up in the oven.

If you don’t have a high speed blender, I recommend that you presoak the cashews in a bowl of boiling water for 15 minutes prior to blending.

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To Make Crispy Bread Topped Mac and Cheese

Cook Macaroni according to packet instructions.

While the macaroni is cooking, put the Cashew Cheese Sauce ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Pour the cheese sauce over the cooked pasta, and stir gently until the pasta is coated.

Pour the pasta into a medium baking dish. If you’re making the recipe ahead, you can stop here and store the pasta, covered, in the fridge overnight.

Toast two slices of bread. Crumble the toasted bread over the Mac and Cheese, then sprinkle with grated vegan cheese.

Bake for approximately 15 minutes until the top is crispy and golden, and the cheese is melted.

This recipe serves 8 as a side, or 4 as a main.

If you’re looking for more warm and comforting Christmas meals, check out my Sweet Mustard Vegan Roast and Lemon Thyme Roast Potatoes.

Crispy Bread Topped Mac and Cheese

Servings 8 Sides

Ingredients
  

  • 500 g Macaroni Pasta
  • 2 Slices Bread
  • ¼ cup Vegan Cheese grated

Cheese Sauce

  • 2 cups Cashews presoaked if necessary
  • 1 cup Water
  • 3 Tbs Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 tspn Garlic Powder
  • 1 tspn Salt
  • 2 Tbs Lemon Juice

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
  • Cook Macaroni according to packet directions, then drain.
  • While macaroni is cooking, toast the two slices of bread.
  • To make the cheese sauce, add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.
  • Return drained pasta to the saucepan and pour over the cheese sauce. Mix until all of the pasta is coated.
  • Pour pasta into a medium baking dish.
  • Crumble the toast over the pasta. It doesn’t matter if you have larger chunks. These will crisp up in the oven. Top with grated cheese.
  • Bake for approximately 15 minutes until the top is golden brown.
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