The last thing anyone wants to do is spend a lot of time cooking on Mondays after a day of work. They’re called Monday blues for a reason! That’s why I love shortcut dinners. They’re definitely still gourmet, but we get to cheat a little bit to speed things up. I don’t know about you, but I didn’t need all the help I need.
I also love to do as many Meatless Mondays as much as possible. It’s nice to have a theme to help with dinner ideas! That’s why I love Maya Kaimal simmering sauces. Not only are they delicious, they’re also organic, gluten free, non-GMO, and vegan! The sauces are packed with flavor and all my dishes taste like I’ve slaved over a stove for hours. It can be simply heated up and ladled over rice, or it can be turned into this delicious tikka masala mac and cheese recipe.
In keeping with the vegan theme, I made this mac and cheese with vegan paneer; aka, extra firm tofu with nutritional yeast. I absolutely love paneer. Saag paneer is always one of my go-to dishes. But, alas, paneer is cheese and contains dairy. Quite honestly, I always keep my fridge stocked with tofu so I wanted to use it in my dish. Tofu is packed with protein to make this dish feel more filling. One way I made the tofu more paneer-like was by using nutritional yeast. I haven’t played enough with nutritional yeast but I plan to. Nutritional yeast has a natural “cheese” flavor and is packed with vitamin B and protein. I coated the tofu with a nutritional yeast paste to infuse as much cheese flavor into it as possible.
Any type of dried pasta will work for this dish. My only suggestion is to use a type of pasta with ridges or holes that’ll pick up the sauce in every nook and cranny. You’ll want to lick every drop of this sauce – trust me.
Vegan Tikka Masala Mac and Cheese
- 16 ounce extra firm tofu, sliced
- 4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1/3 cup water
- Pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoon vegan butter
- 1 small shallot, minced
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup oat milk
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1 jar (12.5 ounce) Maya Kaimal Tikka Masala sauce
- 12 ounce box of dried pasta
- Step 1 Blot tofu dry with paper towels and cut into thin slices.
- Step 2 Mix nutritional yeast, water, and salt into a paste in a large bowl. Add tofu to coat.
- Step 3 In a nonstick pan, add oil and heat over medium. Pan fry the tofu until golden brown on each side. Set aside.
- Step 4 Cook pasta per box instructions and set aside to make sauce.
- Step 5 In a large sauce pan, add vegan butter over medium heat. Then add shallots and cook until fragrant (about 3 minutes).
- Step 6 Whisk in the flour and cook for about 2 minutes. Add oat milk and continue whisking until a roux forms.
- Step 7 Add salt, pepper, and nutritional yeast and continue to whisk.
- Step 8 Finally, add tikka masala sauce and mix thoroughly. Turn heat to low and simmer for about 2 minutes.
- Step 9 Add cooked pasta and toss to cover.