Grilled Mac & Cheez

Last week I posted my quintessential Cheeziest Mac & Cheez recipe. This week I want to share another way you can use this mac & cheese to create delicious comfort food. One of my favorite meals as a kid was grilled cheese. That’s still a go to comfort food for me, and for Nick. We adapted the classic grilled cheese to be filled with this ooey-gooey vegan mac. I’ve been experimenting with sour dough, and created a recipe for sourdough rye. It was a bit of a fail, but still delicious. I hope to perfect it in the coming months. For now grab your favorite loaf from the supermarket, or use a favorite bread recipe of your own. Pair it with your favorite soup, or make this quick tomato bisque to go with it.

The tomato bisque I made with this might not be the most traditional. I’ve chosen to share it, because it is delicious and easy to make. I used up ingredients I already had in my pantry. This would be a great go to if you’re stuck at home with a cold and just want some tomato soup, but feel like you’d keel over if you had to go to the grocery store.

Grilled Mac & Cheez

  • Servings: 1-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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For the mac & cheez find our recipe here .

Mac & Grilled Cheez Ingredients

  • 1 loaf of hearty sourdough bread (can be store bought or homemade)
  • 2 tbsp vegan butter
  • 1/4 cup of the Cheeziest Mac & Cheez

Quick Tomato Bisque Ingredients

  • 15 oz can of tomato sauce
  • 16 oz can of full fat coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • dry herbs to taste


  1. Make the Cheeziest Mac & Cheez according to the recipe directions.
  2. Cut two thick slices of bread. Butter one side of each slice.
  3. Add about 1/4 cup of mac & cheez sandwiched in between the slices of bread. The butter sides should both be facing out, and away from the mac & cheez. Feel free to add other fillings like vegan bacon, or mustard.
  4. If you’d like to make the quick tomato bisque, or a store bought soup prepare them now.
  5. To prepare the bisque simmer garlic, tomato paste, and tomato sauce in a small pot with an Italian spice blend of dried basil, parsley, oregano, rosemary, and thyme to taste.
  6. Add in the coconut milk. You can add the whole thing, or just as much as you’d like. I added most of the can, because I like a really creamy tomato soup.
  7. Allow your soup to simmer on low while you finish the grilled mac & cheez.
  8. Heat a large pan on the stove. Add a little additional butter to the pan, and then carefully place the sandwich in.
  9. Grill bread evenly on both sides. Use caution when flipping to make sure the macaroni doesn’t fall out. I held the sandwich in place with one hand while flipping it very slowly with the spatula to keep the mac from sliding out.
  10. Remove the sandwich and tomato bisque from heat and serve. Slice sandwiches in half for easy consumption.

Cheeziest Mac & Cheez

I’m going to keep this weeks post short and simple, because it’s a short and simple recipe. We’ll use this as a foundation for a number of greasy, American style comfort food recipes in the future. While I have an arsenal of healthy vegetable based mac and cheese recipes this one is my go too quintessential cheezy mac and cheez. It’s just like every ooey gooey bowl of mac you had slathered in things that were barely cheese like Velveeta. It’s great for eating on it’s own straight out of the pan, baking in the oven with bread crumbs, topping your favorite burger with, and so much more. Add some broccoli for the illusion of a healthy dinner. The best part is it takes so little time to make which means it’s great to whip up as a main dish or a quick side with a more elaborate meal.

Cheeziest Mac & Cheez

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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  • 8 oz dry elbow macaroni (about 2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup vegan butter
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 3/4 cup oat or other non-dairy milk
  • 1 tbsp white miso paste
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 3/4 cup vegan shredded cheddar style cheese


  1. Boil the pasta according to its packaging directions, and then drain the macaroni. Rinse with cold water to halt the cooking process and set it aside.
  2. In a separate sauce pan create a roux by first adding the butter and allowing it to melt. Once the butter has melted, and becomes slightly darker in color add in the flour while consistently whisking. Make sure you have your oat milk measured out and ready to go before you start this step.
  3. Once the flour and butter have been integrated add the oat milk while continuing to whisk.
  4. Add miso paste, dijon mustard, garlic powder, salt, and pepper to the milk. Whisk thoroughly to incorporate the dijon and dissolve the miso.
  5. Allow the mixture to simmer for a bit while periodically whisking. It should start to thicken up. Once it reaches a consistency of about a heavy whipping cream start slowly adding the cheese. Whisk continually while doing so to keep the cheese from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  6. Continue adding the cheese until it is all integrated into the sauce. Allow the sauce to simmer until it thickens to the desired consistency of a macaroni and cheese sauce. Whisk periodically while doing so. I recommend tasting the sauce while it thickens to see if you’d like to add any additional seasoning to taste.
  7. Once the sauce has reached a good gooey, cheese sauce consistency add the macaroni into the sauce stirring them with a spoon to thoroughly coat them.
  8. Cook until the macaroni and cheese is hot, and then serve.

Veggie Packed Mac & Nocheez

The vegan scene in Pittsburgh has been growing at an impressive rate. It’s great to have so many options, and I love to support local businesses that help promote a lifestyle of kindness and empathy as well as health. I was ecstatic when I was contacted to do a feature on Notcho Nocheez. This is a product that I first encountered when I attended VegFeast, which is a local vegan thanksgiving event hosted by Justice for Animals. While it doesn’t look like VegFeast is going to be happening this year due to Covid-19 I’d highly recommend going in the future if you live in the ‘Burgh. It’s a great way to meet like minded people, and share some excellent vegan Thanksgiving food prepared by local businesses. Each table at VegFeast had a jar of Notcho Nocheez to try, and we loved it! Nick is allergic to pretty much every nut besides almonds, so we were thrilled to find a nut based “cheese” product that we could both eat. Notcho Nocheez self-describes as an “almond spread” on it’s label, but it’s so much more than that.

It comes in three different flavors; Tangy, Hot, and Classic. We’ve had every flavor, and really enjoy them all. If I had to pick a favorite I’d probably say it’s the Classic. The Classic flavor is good on its own, but its milder taste allows it a lot of versatility when adding it to recipes. Notcho Nocheez is great as a dip, and a spread. Use it straight out of the jar on your nachos, totchos (tater tot nachos), vegan chili cheese dogs, and so much more. I like to get creative, and make new recipes using the Nocheez as a base. I don’t use a lot of prepackaged products in my cooking, I like to cook from scratch generally, but this is one of the few that I make an exception for. It makes a great substitute for cheese that combines easily with sauces, and tastes better than the oil based vegan cheeses on the market that can be difficult to melt down. If you’re local you can pick up some Notcho Nocheez at one of the many retailers listed on their website, and if you’re not so local you can have it shipped to you.

This recipe is a hearty, starchy baked mac and cheese based off of a recipe my Grandma Doris would always make at the holidays. I made this recipe for Thanksgiving a few years back, and everyone loved it. Even my uncles, who I’m not so sure understand what a vegan diet is, came back for seconds without questioning what it was made from. When devout meat consumers don’t even question where the dairy products are I consider that a success. I’ve packed this recipe full of fresh fall seasonal veggies, and of course, Notcho Nocheez.

Veggie Packed Mac & Nocheez

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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This recipe makes a lot of servings, and is great for sharing or freezing extra portions. If you’re short on storage space and would like to scale it down just halve all of the ingredients.


  • 1/2 of a butternut squash (approximately 2 cups cubed)
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 medium russet potatoes
  • 1/3 cup Notcho Nocheez Classic
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp red chili flakes
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 16 oz elbow macaroni
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary


  1. Clean and peel squash, carrots, and russet potatoes. Save half of your squash to use in other recipes. Chop everything into cubes of about the same size.
  2. Boil squash, carrots, and potatoes in a large pot full of water for 30 minutes or until fork tender.
  3. Cool the ingredients, and add them to a food processor. Add in Notcho Nocheez, peeled garlic cloves, onion powder, olive oil, salt, pepper, and red chili flakes. Blend until it is the consistency of a smooth sauce.
  4. Cook your elbow macaroni a few minutes shy of the package directions. We cooked ours for about 7 minutes, until it was just shy of al dente. If you cook the noodles to al dente in this stage they’ll get a bit overdone in the oven.
  5. Once cooking is complete drain the pasta, and run it under cold water to halt the cooking process.
  6. In a large bowl add the sauce, and the elbow macaroni. Stir to thoroughly coat the macaroni. If you don’t want to make a baked macaroni you can put it on the stove top and warm it up. This sauce is just as good for a creamy stove top mac as it is for a baked mac.
  7. If you are following the recipe directly, and baking your mac, add the noodles into a large glass baking dish. A 4-5 quart baking dish should hold all of the pasta.
  8. In a separate bowl combine panko, nutritional yeast, parsley, oregano, thyme, and rosemary. Add additional salt and pepper to taste. Mix dry ingredients together so they are well integrated.
  9. Top the macaroni with the breadcrumb and herb blend.
  10. Preheat oven to 375, and bake uncovered for 30 minutes. The top should come out crispy.