The most amazing homemade vegan cheese sauce that is nut free, oil-free, gluten-free & fat-free. It is perfect for dips and mac 'n' cheese. Healthy, creamy and made from potatoes and zucchini.
Are you ready for this? Are you ready for a to-die-for vegan cheese sauce that tastes rich, thick, creamy and silky smooth? This is so darn delicious over mac 'n' cheese too. Since there is no cashews, there is no cashew flavor either.
In case you are wondering, this one is totally guilt-free, nut-free and oil-free...even coconut-free. It is not only fat-free, it is also low calorie and low carb. Yeah buddy. Taste testers were stumped at it's authenticity. It was a winner all around!
This cheese sauce is amazingggg on nachos and guess what, as a fat-free mac 'n' cheese. I served this for dinner as mac 'n' cheese and my daughter gobbled it up in minutes.
The majority of vegan cheese recipes are made with nuts/cashews or tofu, etc. Since so many of you readers cannot have nuts, I wanted to create a nut-free and fat-free cheese sauce that we could all enjoy with absolutely zero guilt. There are some recipes lurking around using sweet potatoes and carrots. I haven't tried those yet, but since there is hearty veggies in them, apparently they are really filling, creamy and delicious. I wanted to create mine a bit different and really drive home that smooth cheesy taste.
So, I put my thinking cap on and perused my own recipes on my blog and since my Low-Fat Nut-Free Creamy Parsley Sauce has been such a hit with you guys and is potato-based, I knew the cheese would need to have potatoes involved.
Mashed yukon gold potatoes, to be exact.
Since I knew potatoes alone wouldn't give me the texture I wanted, I knew I wanted to incorporate another vegetable.....then it hit me, my Spicy Zucchini Pepper Soup is incredibly creamy, full of flavor and gives an amazing texture. Boom, zucchini! It is one of my oldest recipes and has always been one of my all-time favorite soups. I knew it would help give that killer silky-smooth cheese texture without it being too starchy by using all potatoes. I was right, it worked AMAZING.
Zucchini is the other magical ingredient here. Zucchini is what helps drive home that amazing, silky-smooth texture. So, sometimes inspiration for recipes can come right from your own blog! Using elements of my parsley sauce and my zucchini soup recipes came together to make an amazing vegan fat-free cheese sauce.
Lastly, another key ingredient that really drives home the cheesy flavor....soy sauce. It gives a depth of flavor that salt alone doesn't give. I tried just lemon juice, apple cider vinegar and salt and none of them gave that cheesy flavor as great as soy sauce. I mean seriously, this entire recipe is basic ingredients that I just got at my local grocery store. Easy peasy.
This whole vegan cheese sauce recipe is ready in 30 minutes. It really doesn't get any easier. Just roast your zucchini, cook your potatoes and blend it all up. All that's left to do is grab some friends and DIG IN.
In case you were wondering, it makes a phenomenal mac 'n' cheese!
Yeehaw. Fat-free Vegan "Cheese" Sauce and Mac 'N' Cheese?
Get in my mouth.
I'll be anxiously wondering what you all think of this Vegan Fat-Free Mac and Cheese, so pretty please leave me feedback below and rate it! This is obviously not exactly like dairy cheese, but it is a delicious sauce. You can also tag me on Instagram with your lovely creation at #thevegan8 so I can see it and have my day made!
Want to try another cheese recipe that is richer and Mexican-inspired and sure to wow your guests? Try my Easy Vegan Mexican Cheese Sauce made with cashews and a bonus tahini version!
- 1 small zucchini, peeled and sliced (130 g, you will need about 1 cup sliced zucchini before cooking, make sure you weigh the correct amount or you will get an off taste of zucchini!)
- 5 small yukon gold potatoes (220 g, use any yellow or "buttery" potato, but not russet! Weigh your ingredients!, you should end up with 1 lightly filled cooked/mashed potato)
- ¾ cup -1 cup water, as needed to reach desired thickness (I ALWAYS use 1 cup, so keep that in mind in regards to other ingredients)
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast (20 g)
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½-3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika or regular if you don't like smoked, add to taste keeping in mind the water amount
- 2 teaspoons liquid aminos (or low-sodium soy sauce or tamari, do not omit, this is what gives the cheesy flavor, do not use coconut aminos, it will not yield the correct flavor!)
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, or more to taste
- Optional toppings: red pepper flakes, chopped tomatoes, sliced jalapenos
- Note: This recipe is only 8 ingredients (+ salt & water), so each ingredient is crucial to the final flavor result, so subbing or eliminating an ingredient can greatly alter the result. The weight in grams is provided for accurate results.
- First prepare the zucchini by preheating an oven to 415 degrees and line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Peel all the green skin off the zucchini and slice into ¼ inch slices and salt and pepper well. It's imperative to peel the zucchini, otherwise your sauce will be an ugly green. Bake for about 15 minutes until tender.
- Meanwhile, cook your potatoes either by roasting, steaming or in the microwave. Since I wanted a fast dinner, I just cooked them in the microwave for about 5 minutes until very soft. Do not boil them as they will get water logged and make the sauce more runny. I left the skins on since I have a Vitamix, but if you are concerned about getting the sauce smooth, peel them before cooking.
- After the potatoes are cooked, mash them with a fork and measure out 1 cup. If you followed the correct weight measurement, you should get just about 1 lightly filled cup of mashed potatoes. If your potatoes are large, you may need less. It's important to measure the mashed potatoes for accurate results. Add them to your high speed blender. Update: Using a food processor will make this too gooey, make sure to use just a blender.
- Once the zucchini is done, add it along with all of the remaining ingredients (start with ¾ cup water and add as needed, stopping at 1 cup) to your blender and blend until smooth. You will need to stop and scrape a couple of times from the bottom during. Do not be too eager to add extra water until you've really blended it up a couple of minutes on high to get it completely smooth. It will seem too thick at first, but it will start to turn very smooth from all the water from the zucchini. Trust me, it will get super thick and creamy this way, don't add water unless you blend it up a few minutes and If necessary, add just a TINY amount of water just to blend it. If it's a bit thinner than you like, you can reheat it over the stove to thicken it up some.
- Taste and add any extra lemon juice and/or salt/spices if necessary. Add any desired toppings such as red pepper flakes, chopped tomatoes, sliced jalapenos. I like a kick of heat to my cheese so I added red pepper flakes but will totally blend up some jalapenos next time in the sauce. Sauce makes 2½ cups.
- To make it as a mac 'n' cheese, just simply boil your pasta and pour as much (a lot!) cheese sauce over the pasta. You can either warm the cheese by running it awhile in the blender or gently warming over the stove. It gives such an incredible cheesy, thick and stick-to-pasta result. It really reminded me of mac 'n' cheese growing up. Considering this is totally fat-free and good for you, I'd say that's huge!