Everyone loves cheese. Even if you’re a vegan, or simply consume limited dairy, it doesn’t mean that you have to live your life without the delicious flavor of cheese. For vegans and those on a low-dairy diet, nutritional yeast is your best friend. And if you’re a cheese lover, nutritional yeast is a great (and yes, nutritional) way to switch things up.
So, what is nutritional yeast, you may ask? Nutritional yeast, often referred to (by me) as nature’s Cheeto powder, is actually a deactivated yeast that is sold in the form of flakes or powder. It’s an amazing source of B-vitamins and protein – in fact, nutritional yeast is a complete protein, meaning it contains all of the amino acids our body needs but cannot produce. Because it’s a complete source of protein, it’s a favorite amongst those who don’t consume meat or dairy.
Nutritional yeast is the secret to this utterly delicious cheese sauce. It’s an amazing alternative to those yucky, fake cheese sauces you can find at your local supermarket. Not to mention, this recipe contains onions, potatoes, carrots and an array of spices – we bet you won’t find that in those heavily manufactured supermarket cheese sauces (yup, sorry Velveeta). Thanks to all of the nutritious, real food ingredients, this is a cheese sauce that you can feel good about giving to yourself and your child. It can be used as a dip for veggies, a sauce for some Mac n’ Cheese, a nacho-cheesy chip dip, or a topping for your tacos on Taco Tuesday. Whichever you choose, this cheese sauce won’t disappoint.
A Vegan Cheese Sauce for Veggie Dippin’ and Mac and Cheesin’
1/2 of a small onion or 1/4 of a large onion, diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup potatoes, peeled and diced
3/4 cup carrots, peeled and diced
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Place the Instant Pot on the sauté setting and add onions and olive oil.
Sauté the onions and olive oil until the onions are soft and translucent.
Switch the Instant Pot from the sauté setting to STEW setting, and add in potatoes, carrots, water, lemon juice and salt.
Set the Instant Pot timer to 30 minutes and let the Instant Pot work it’s magic.
Once the Instant Pot is finished cooking everything, carefully release the lid and remove the contents of the Instant Pot and place into a bowl.
Allow the cooked items to cool for 5 minutes, then transfer to a blender.
Add in nutritional yeast, garlic powder, turmeric and paprika, then blend until the cheese mixture is smooth and creamy. If necessary, use a spatula to scrape the sides of the blender, and blend again until smooth.
Serve warm with your favorite veggies, on cooked noodles, or as a dip for grilled meats.