I love mac and cheese. I love it in the box; I love the ones the Food Network makes with four different kinds of cheeses. What I’m not so sure about are vegan mac and cheeses because in my experience with vegan recipes, anytime you try to make a vegan food taste like a food that is not not normally vegan (and in the case of mac and cheese, this is definitely the case), the results are usually not so great.
So imagine my surprise when I found Tasting Table’s recipe for mac and cheese, and it tasted pretty darn good. Because of the spices that were added, it tasted more like a spicy, barbeque cheese sauce. The initial savory-ness caught me off guard, and I’m not sure I liked it at first. But very quickly, I found the meatiness of the flavor to be quite addictive.
Still though, what I craved was mac and cheese and so I played around with the flavors a bit. I took away the peppers, which were a bit prominent for me. I ] added in a ton of lemon juice, which along with the nutritional yeast gave a really strong backdrop of cheesy flavor. The lemon juice also made the flavors of the sauce pop in addition to the tang needed to mimic cheese flavor. The result was a sauce that, although wasn’t 100% “mac and cheese” cheese, gave the creaminess and tanginess of cheese, but with a ton more savory, barbeque flavors.