Who ever knew that potatoes would give a vegan, plant-based, oil free cheese sauce such luxuriant richness and creaminess? Not me. For a few months I saw various recipes for creamy sauces using potatoes and scoffed at them. How wrong I was.
I've made Creamy Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce for a long time, which is a vegan white béchamel sauce alternative.
But, for a plant-based mac and cheese, I needed something different.
Something cheesy, gooey, creamy and, while I love using cashews, they are very rich and calorie-dense.
So, I experimented with a vegan, nut-free, oil-free cheese sauce that would be a good, healthy velveeta substitute or alternative.
Presenting... Fauxveeta! (do you see what we did there?) 😉
This sauce is made using:
- plant-based milk (I use almond milk, but to make this completely nut-free, use soy milk or oat milk)
- nutritional yeast
- turmeric, salt and pepper
Some optional, but highly recommended, flavor boosters are:
The potatoes make it rich, silky and creamy.
The carrots give a hint of sweetness and add to the color.
The onion and garlic are for flavor.
The almond milk adds to the creaminess and is needed to thin the mixture in the blender.
The nutritional yeast gives it the cheesy, umami flavor.
And, the turmeric contributes health benefits and aids in the bright orange color.
Believe me, okay? Just try it. It is not cheese, but it sure does work as a great alternative.
Step 1: Boil the veggies in a stockpot until tender.
Step 2: Blend it up with spices and almond milk.
Step 3: Use as you would use any cheese sauce!
11 ways to use this cheese sauce
- Pour over macaroni for vegan mac and cheese
- Mix with spicy Rotel or salsa for an easy vegan chile con queso nacho cheese dip
- Loaded Vegan Nachos, hello!
- Cheese fries
- Drizzle over tacos
- Drizzle over tostadas
- Broccoli cheese baked potato
- Pour over steamed veggies and rice
- Pour over steamed broccoli for vegan cheesy broccoli side dish
- Broccoli cheese soup
- Use chilled sauce in place of fat in Southern biscuit recipes. Your biscuits will be orange, but will be low-fat!
👨👩👦👦 Serving suggestions
This makes enough sauce (about 4+ cups) to completely coat one pound of macaroni pasta, for mac and cheese.
This should serve four people, with a side salad or other type of vegetable side.
Steamed broccoli goes really well with this. Also, green peas.
Do I have to peel my potatoes?
- For a smooth sauce, peel your potatoes.
- If you don't mind a speckled sauce and are using Yukon gold potatoes, which have a thin skin, you can leave the skins on (but be sure to thoroughly scrub them when washing).
- If you're using potatoes with a thicker skin (like russets), they should definitely be peeled before cooking.
How long will this sauce last?
This vegan cheese sauce will last up to 5 days in a sealed container in the refrigerator. It will last up to 3 months in the freezer.
Will this freeze well?
- Yes! I've tested this and it keeps in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- To reheat, let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Then, heat it up either in the microwave or on the stove.
- Microwave: Remove lid and microwave for 1 minute, then stir. Repeat until hot and smooth again, as needed.
- Stove: Add thawed sauce to a small-medium saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat, stirring frequently. It will look separated at first, but keep heating and stirring it until the smooth, silky consistency has returned.
Is velveeta vegan?
- No. Velveeta cheese contains animal products, like milk, whey, milk protein concentrate, milk fat, along with a host of other preservatives and other things.
- The ingredients for Velveeta are: Milk, Water, Whey, Milk Protein Concentrate, Milkfat, Whey Protein Concentrate, Sodium Phosphate, Contains 2% or less of: Salt, Calcium Phosphate, Lactic Acid, Sorbic Acid, Sodium Citrate, Sodium Alginate, Enzymes, Apocarotenal, Annatto, Cheese Culture.
- This recipe for Fauxveeta Vegan Cheese Sauce is a real whole food, plant-based alternative to Velveeta. Hope you enjoy it!
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Please rate it ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ down below. ⬇️ And, if you make it, please tag me @veryveganish on Instagram in your posted photos! I would love to see your creations. 😄
- 3 cups (530 grams) potato, about 5 medium yukon gold or russet potatoes, peeled and cut into large squares
- 1 ½ cups (210 grams) carrot, about 5 medium carrots, peeled and cut into large pieces the same size at the potatoes
- 1 small onion (175 grams), quartered
- 5 cloves (20 grams) garlic, chopped
- 3 tablespoon nutritional yeast, optional but highly recommended
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsweetened plant-based milk (I use almond)
Optional (but recommended!) Flavor Boosters
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon miso paste
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- Boil potatoes, carrot, onion in water until fork tender, then drain.
- Add cooked veggies to blender with garlic, nutritional yeast, turmeric, salt, almond milk and optional (but recommended!) flavor boosters, if using. You may need to do this in more than one batch, depending on your blender size.
- Blend until completely smooth (I use a Blendtec and press the soup button). If it will not blend, you may need to add a bit more almond milk.
- Taste the sauce and adjust salt, as needed.
Feel free to omit or adjust the nutritional yeast (i.e. adding more) to see if you like it the flavor with more. For us, 3 tablespoon is just right.
*To make nut-free: use soy milk, oat milk or another unsweetened plant-based milk of your choice.
This is delicious over pasta, on top of steamed broccoli or other veggies, or mixed into rice. You can also make it into Vegan Chile con Queso Nacho Cheese using Rotel or salsa.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 250Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 219mgCarbohydrates: 53gFiber: 7gSugar: 5gProtein: 9g
Nutritional calculations are done using online tools, such as recipe widget Create. Even though we have tried to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates.
Update 9/8/17: I have updated this recipe with more specific measurements. Also, the nutritional yeast has been marked as optional. It imparts a cheesy flavor, but is not necessary to make this sauce. We often make it without and it is still delicious! I hope this helps!