Vegan “Cheesy” Quinoa

This dish is the ideal comfort food for a cold winter day. It’s seriously nutritious–made with quinoa and nutritional yeast, has a delightfully nutty/cheesy flavor, is very filling for only around 265 calories per serving, is vegan and gluten-free, and takes less than half an hour to throw together from start to finish.

Vegan “Cheesy” Quinoa (inspired by Oh She Glows‘s vegan mac and cheese)

Serves 4

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed

Cheese sauce:

  • 5/8 cups water
  • 1/2 cup plain soy milk
  • 3/8 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp dry mustard
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tbsp tahini

Boil quinoa in saucepan according to directions on bag/box.

While quinoa is cooking, add all the ingredients for the cheese sauce into a food processor or blender and blend for 30-60 seconds. When the quinoa has almost finished cooking and most of the water has been absorbed, stir in peas and continue cooking, covered.

Once quinoa is cooked, add cheese sauce and simmer over low-medium heat, stirring frequently. The thickening process will take about 5 minutes (don’t worry if you think the sauce is too watery- the cornstarch will thicken it up well).


Pumpkin Peanut Butter

It should be well established at this point that I’m in a serious, long term relationship with peanut butter. Pretty much any recipe that incorporates peanuts will pique my interest, including this light and flavorful variation: pumpkin peanut butter. One taste of this mixture and I fell in love. This is one super-simple recipe that you should definitely try yourself.

Pumpkin Peanut Butter (taken from Chocolate Covered Katie)

  • 1/3 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp peanut butter (you could also substitute another nut butter if you prefer)
  • sweetener to taste, optional (I included 1/2 tsp sugar)
  • pinch of salt

Mix all ingredients together, with a spoon or in a food processor. If your peanut butter is hard, you might want to warm it up a little, pre-mixing.