Finished healthy mac and cheese

THE BEST EVER HEALTHY MAC AND CHEESE

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This is the ultimate healthy mac and cheese recipe. Ella holds a special fondness for cheese, and if it were up to her, she’d happily indulge in this particular mac and cheese every night! It’s no wonder, as mac and cheese is a cherished childhood classic. This mac and cheese has the creamy, cheesy decadence and flavor you crave, but with a lighter touch.

As I prepared this mac and cheese for the blog, Ella exclaimed, “Mom, you’re a genius! Why is this so good?!” Her sheer delight brought a smile to my face, knowing she was relishing every delicious bite. We hope you enjoy this comfort food favorite as much as we do!

Why You Will Love This Mac and Cheese

  • This mac and cheese is easy to make!
  • It is creamy and decadent while being lightened up.
  • You can use your pasta of choice or a pasta alternative.
  • The tofu makes this mac and cheese super creamy!
  • It is cheesy and delicious!

Ingredients Needed For Mac and Cheese

ingredients for healthy mac and cheese
  • Tofu: Use extra firm tofu. The tofu makes this mac and cheese sauce thick and creamy.
  • Onion Powder: Adds flavor to the mac and cheese.
  • Garlic Powder: For a hint of garlic flavor.
  • Cheddar Cheese Powder: Use cheddar cheese powder. It gives this sauce cheese flavor and reduces the amount of shredded cheese needed.
  • Salt: To enhance the flavors.
  • Stone-Ground Mustard: Adds another layer of flavor.
  • Cheddar Cheese: Use shredded light or fat-free cheddar cheese.
  • Pasta: Use your favorite pasta or pasta alternative.

What Pasta To Use

You can use your favorite pasta and pasta shape for this recipe. If you want to lower the carbs in this recipe, use a low carb pasta such as Carba-Nada Pasta, Hearts of Palm, Palmini Low Carb Angel Hair Pasta, or Fiber Gourmet pasta. Another option is to make zucchini noodles using a spiralizer! Also, spaghetti squash is a great pasta alternative.

How To Make Healthy Mac and Cheese

Step 1: Chop the extra firm tofu into small pieces and then add it to a high-powered blender. Next, add the onion powder, garlic powder, cheddar cheese powder, salt, and stone-ground mustard to the blender. Then, blend these ingredients until they are thoroughly combined and the cheese sauce is smooth.

Step 2: Add the cheese sauce to a pan on the stove. Start to heat up the cheese sauce and then add the shredded cheddar cheese. Fold in the cheese over low to medium heat so you don’t burn the sauce. From there, continue mixing until all of the cheese is incorporated and melted. 

Step 3: Once the cheese sauce is finished, add your rinsed and drained cooked pasta or pasta alternative to a large pot with the sauce and mix. Warm up the sauce with the pasta and enjoy!

How To Serve Mac And Cheese

Serve the cheese sauce with your favorite cooked pasta or pasta alternative. Thoroughly mix the mac and cheese and heat it up in a large saucepan on the stove. Then, transfer this mac and cheese to bowls and serve. You can serve mac and cheese as a main dish or as a side dish! We like to serve this mac and cheese with cornflake chicken tenders, balsamic roasted brussels sprouts, and carrot apple salad.

Expert Tips

  • Use Extra Firm Tofu: Make sure to use extra firm tofu in this recipe. The tofu makes this sauce creamy and thick.
  • Chop The Tofu: Chop the extra firm tofu into smaller pieces before adding it to the blender so you can easily blend this sauce.
  • Thoroughly Blend: Use a high-powered blender and thoroughly blend the ingredients until smooth.
  • Incorporate The Cheese: When you incorporate the shredded cheddar cheese to the sauce, make sure all of it melts and that the sauce is combined.
  • Don’t Burn The Sauce: Continuously stir the sauce in the pan so it doesn’t burn.
  • Boil The Pasta: You can boil the pasta while you make and combine the sauce in the pan so it is all ready to go. Once the pasta is cooked, rinse and drain it. Then, add it to a saucepan with the cheese sauce.
  • Save Some Pasta Water: You can save some pasta water and add a little bit of it to thin out the sauce if necessary.

How To Store and Reheat

To Store: If you don’t end up using all of the cheese sauce, transfer it to an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Then, you can make more mac and cheese. Or, mix it with spaghetti squash, pour it over roasted broccoli, or enjoy it with some chips!

To Reheat: Transfer leftover cheese sauce to a saucepan on the stove with rinsed and drained cooked pasta. Then, heat the mac and cheese over low to medium heat on the stove in the saucepan and enjoy! Or, reheat the sauce in a microwave-safe container in the microwave.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Mac and Cheese Healthy?

Traditional mac and cheese is made with loads of butter, cheese, and milk. We have made a healthier option that is lightened up by using tofu, cheddar cheese powder, and a small amount of shredded cheddar cheese.

How Long Does Homemade Mac and Cheese Last?

You can store leftover cheese sauce for 3-4 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Can I Make Mac and Cheese Ahead Of Time?

You can make this cheese sauce ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator for a few days. When you are ready to serve, mix it with the rinsed and drained cooked pasta and warm it up.

More Recipes To Try Next!

If you try this recipe please be sure to leave us a comment and star rating ★★★★★ letting us know how it turns out for you. We hope you enjoy this mac and cheese!

THE BEST EVER HEALTHY MAC AND CHEESE

Recipe by Shawna
5.0 from 2 votes
Course: Lunch, DinnerCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy
Servings

8

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

10

minutes
Calories

62

kcal

This is the ultimate healthy mac and cheese recipe! It has the classic mac and cheese flavor you are looking for and we have lightened it up.

Cook Mode

Keep the screen of your device on

Ingredients

  • 12 oz extra firm tofu

  • 1 TSP onion powder

  • 1 TSP garlic powder

  • 4 TBSP cheddar cheese powder

  • 1/2 TSP salt

  • 1 TSP stone-ground mustard

  • 2 ounces of extra sharp light or fat-free cheddar cheese, shredded

  • 16 ounces of your pasta of choice

Directions

  • Chop the extra firm tofu up into small pieces and then add it to a high-powered blender. Next, add the onion powder, garlic powder, cheddar cheese powder, salt, and stone-ground mustard to the blender. Then, blend these ingredients until they are thoroughly combined and the cheese sauce is smooth.
  • Add the cheese sauce to a pan on the stove. Start to heat up the cheese sauce and then add the light or fat-free shredded cheddar cheese. Fold in the cheese over low to medium heat so you don’t burn the sauce. Continue mixing until all of the cheese is incorporated and melted. 
  • Now that the cheese sauce is finished, add it to a large pot with the rinsed and drained cooked pasta or pasta alternative. You can save a little pasta water in case you want to thin out the cheese sauce a little bit.
  • Thoroughly mix and heat the cheese sauce and pasta over low to medium heat. Then, serve this mac and cheese in bowls and enjoy!

Equipment

Recipe Video

YouTube video

Notes

  • This recipe makes 8 servings and the WW Points are per serving. Also, the WW Points are only based on the cheese sauce using fat-free cheddar cheese. Please check the points on the pasta and cheese you use. Additionally, please check the number of calories in your mac and cheese. We did not include details on the calorie information because it depends on which ingredients and brands you use.
  • WW Points™: 1 point
  • To see your WW Points™ in the WW app for this recipe click here! Or, please manually add the ingredients to the recipe builder.
  • Nutritional information is provided as a reference, using an online calculator. We recommend verifying the information independently. It could vary based on cooking methods and ingredients used.

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