Skip store-bought options, and make this easy, gluten free mac and cheese recipe with simple ingredients and less than 30 minutes instead! Vegan option, too.
- 8 ounces gluten free pasta (elbow macaroni, penne, or other) – about 3-4 cups cooked
- 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, plant based butter, or 3 Tablespoons neutral oil
- 1 Tablespoon (8–10 grams) cornstarch or 2 Tablespoons (28 grams) gluten-free all-purpose flour (without xanthan gum)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup canned coconut milk or coconut milk lite (see notes)
- 1/2 cup non dairy milk
- 1 teaspoon gluten free bouillon (optional for flavor)
- 2 cups (224 grams) high-quality shredded cheddar cheese (medium to sharp) or soy-free vegan cheese (see notes for substitute)
- Optional – 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Cook the gluten free pasta to al dente, according to package instructions. Drain and set aside.
- Melt the butter (or heat the oil) in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Once melted, whisk in cornstarch or flour, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Stir and cook for 2 minutes on medium-low heat until the color of the roux gets slightly darker in color.
- Gradually whisk in coconut milk, non dairy milk and optional bouillon, whisking constantly to remove clumps. Cook over medium-low heat until the mixture starts to thicken, about 3-5 minutes. NOTE – If the mixture reaches a soft boil, remove from heat, then reduce the heat to low, and return the pan to the stove. Continue to heat and stir until mixture has thickened.
- Reduce the heat to low and add the shredded cheese or nutritional yeast. Gently mix with a spatula until the cheese is melted and combined. Add the optional smoked paprika and additional seasonings, if desired.
- Gently stir the cooked pasta into the pot of cheese sauce until it is evenly coated.
- Let the macaroni and cheese sit a few minutes to thicken and absorb sauce before serving.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Taste/Texture Tips – Use freshly grated or shredded cheese for a smoother sauce. Bouillon is optional but adds richness without extra cheese.
Substitute Tips – 3/4 cup nutritional yeast may be used in place of cheese (similar to our vegan cheese sauce recipe) but the taste and texture will slightly change. Fuller fat non dairy milk (such as a cashew milk) or an unsweetened non-dairy creamer may be substituted for coconut milk.
Reheating/Storage Tips – The texture of the cheese sauce will change and thicken once chilled. Reheat in a sauce pan and stir in 1-2 Tablespoons milk or veggie broth, if needed.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 15-20 minutes
- Category: dinner
- Method: stove top
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size:
- Calories: 358
- Sugar: 0.9 g
- Sodium: 458.4 mg
- Fat: 11.4 g
- Saturated Fat: 7.2 g
- Carbohydrates: 20.1 g
- Fiber: 1 g
- Protein: 13.5 g
- Cholesterol: 58.7 mg
Keywords: gluten free mac and cheese recipe, vegetarian macaroni and cheese, quick gluten free meal