Ditch the dairy with this vegan Baked Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese Recipe! It’s made with gluten-free noodles, a health-kick from broccoli and a fake-out “cheese” sauce made from butternut squash and cashew milk. Lately, I’ve been feeling like I want to change my diet up. I’ve been inspired by people around me and through educating myself with research to work on decreasing my meat consumption. Don’t get me wrong now, I am definitely not anti-meat. I certainly appreciate and value meat as part of my diet, but it doesn’t need to be an everyday, every meal kind of situation.
My reasons for wanting to support this campaign and adopt it in my life is two fold:
1. It’s an expensive and unnecessary habit – even though I love meat, it makes a huge dent in our monthly food budget. There are so many plant-based alternatives to protein that make having meat at every meal completely unnecessary.
2. I’m trying to decrease my ecological footprint – I haven’t talked enough about this on here, but the last few months I’ve been actively trying to decrease my waste consumption and try to live more sustainably. One of the most substantial impacts I can make is focusing on a plant-based diet.
My only concern with decreasing my meat and dairy consumption is that I won’t get enough protein for my active lifestyle. Turns out it’s such a misnomer how much protein we think we need to consume. We oftentimes forget that veggies and other sources of nutrition provide substantial protein that is comparable to meat. In addition, unless you’re trying to become a body-builder (which I’m not), you really don’t need as much protein as you think you do. With a better balance of meat and vegetable protein, I am still certain I can get in enough each day.
That’s ultimately what inspired this Baked Butternut Squash Mac + Cheese. It totally passed the filling and delicious test! It’s dairy-free, vegan, gluten-free and still insanely yummy. You can expect many more dishes like these and I hope you’ll join me in the #MeatlessMondayNight challenge! I’m excited to kick things off.
For the full recipe, head over to The Healthy Maven!