A Swiss Chard Walnut Pesto with White Bean Mac and Cheese. (whole grain elbow noodles & steamed broccoli florets)
This takes pasta to “a whole notha’ level”!
This mac sauce is made up of cashews and beans, and the addition of the pesto drizzle on top is the icing on this healthy, plant-filled meal.
Who said mac and cheese had to be just for kids?!
A heart-healthy, comfort food with zero cholesterol and all the flavor.
These are the Whole Wheat Elbow Noodles I used. They look like white pasta when cooked and can easily please the pickiest kid. *Please sub for gluten-free pasta to make this delicious meal completely gluten-free!
Swiss Chard Walnut Pesto with the help of Queen Elsa
*Tip: keep these frozen herb cubes around for when you don’t have fresh herbs
Or plant your own urban organic herb garden
A Swiss Chard Walnut Pesto with White Bean Mac and Cheese
Cooking Time: 30-45 min max
White Bean Mac Sauce
- 1 15.5 oz can White Beans (cannellini or navy)
- 1/2 cup Raw Cashews (soaked in water overnight or at least 5 hours until soft and swollen, then drain, if not using a high speed blender)
- 1 tsp Sea Salt
- 1 Tbs Lemon Juice
- 1/4 cup Nutritional Yeast (nooch)
- Unsweetened Plant Milk to thin to desired thickness (start with 1/2 cup)
Swiss Chard Walnut Pesto
- 2 cups Raw Greens (swiss chard or baby spinach)
- 1/2 cup Fresh Basil Leaves or 1 Frozen Basil Cube (or omit)
- 1/2 cup Raw Walnuts (soaked in water overnight or at least 5 hours until soft and swollen, then drain, if not using a high speed blender)
- 1 Tbs Lemon Juice
- 1 Raw Garlic Cloves or 1 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
- Water to thin to desired consistency
- 1 lb of Elbow-Shaped Pasta Noodles (gluten-free if needed, we like jovial brand)
- 2 stalks of Fresh Broccoli (cut off the florets and wash well in strainer)
- Boil noodles according to package.
- Steam or Roast the broccoli. Steam: in a lidded pot with a steamer basket, add 1 cup water to the bottom, place the florets in tree basket, bring to a boil, then steam with lid on about 8-12 min. Test with fork for desired tenderness. Remove lid and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Roasted: on a parchment lined baking tray, arrange florets evenly, *you can spray with a little oil here if you like or keep it oil free. Sprinkle some sea salt. Bake at 415°F for about 30 min until browned and tender.
- In the blended add all the ingredients for the mac sauce. Blend until smooth, adjusting consistency with plant milk*. Pour over hot noodles or heat on stove.
- No need to wash the blender, add the pesto ingredients and blend until smooth, adjusting consistency with water. *If using Swiss Chard, remove & discard the thick stems from the leaves first.
- Drizzle pesto on top of noodles with broccoli when served. Add Salt & Pepper to taste.