This veggie-heavy, no-nutritional-yeast, and nut-free sharp cheese sauce is almost too good to be true. It’s incredible how these healthy ingredients combine into something that tastes so cheesy and decadent.

Creamy Mac Sauce (and Tex-Mex K-So) [Vegan]

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  • 1 cup boiled chunks of peeled potato, russet, red, or yellow, or the Substitution of your choice
  • Cooked Veggie Base (see notes)
  • 1/4 cup tahini paste or the Substitution of your choice
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and boiled whole (for more flavor, roast them)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon mild miso paste (preferably chickpea-based)
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 1/4 teaspoon sweet or Hungarian paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup roasted, diced tomatoes or chunky salsa (optional, for Tex-Mex K-So)

For the Sharp White Creamy Mac:

  • 1/2 cup cauliflower (boiled in chunks) or 1/2 cup cooked, drained white beans (cannellini, navy, or Great Northern)
  • 2 tablespoons jalapeño brine
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • Charred Mac
  • Add 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika


  1. Combine the boiled potatoes and reserved Cooked Veggie Base liquid in a strong blender or food processor and process until smooth.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients, except the optional tomatoes or salsa. Blend the ingredients on low and gradually increase to top speed until the mixture is completely smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. The sauce is ready to spoon over warm pasta or, if you’d like it really warm, heat it on the stovetop over low heat.
  4. Pour the excess sauce into a storage container. Or if you’d like the Tex-Mex experience (optional), proceed to step 5.
  5. For the Tex-Mex K-So, stir in the optional tomatoes, and it’s ready for dipping.
  6. Store the mixture in a dry, covered container in the refrigerator and enjoy it within 1 week. To reheat, whisk 1 tablespoon water into the sauce as it warms in a saucepan. Stir thoroughly to make it smooth again.

For the Sharp White Creamy Mac:

  1. Omit the tomato paste, bell pepper, paprika, and carrots.
  2. In step 2, add cauliflower or drained white beans and smoked paprika into the blender.
  3. Extra prep: Instead of boiling the red pepper and onion, pan roast them in a very hot cast-iron skillet until you get some charred spots and the vegetables soften.
  4. This can be done while the other veggies cook. Do not peel before blending.


To make the Cooked Veggie Base, bring a medium-size pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add 1/2 cup carrot chunks (about 1 inch thick), 1/2 cup onion wedges (about 2 inches wide), and 1/3 cup red or yellow bell pepper strips (about 2 inches wide) and boil until very tender when pierced with a fork, about 7 minutes. Drain the vegetables through a colander, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid (you’ll use this in step 1 of the sauce recipe).


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