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October 2020 Issue
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Almost instant mac ‘n’ cheese

Photo: Maddy Bellcroft

This easy-cheesy favourite tastes fantastic and weighs little in the pack.

It’s not quite instant because you still have to cook pasta, but this mac ‘n’ cheese recipe is a great option for anyone who can’t have dairy or wants a lightweight easy option on multi-day trips.

The spinach in this recipe is optional and would probably only be fresh enough if used on an overnight trip. You can find nutritional yeast, an inactive form of yeast which has a tasty cheesy flavour, in most supermarkets’ ‘health food’ section or in organic/wholefood stores.

Prep time 3min
Cook time 10min
Serves 2
Cost $5-6

3 cup uncooked pasta, elbows or shells (or however much you want to feed 2 people)
1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
½ cup cashews
½ tsp veggie stock powder
¼ tsp onion powder
Pinch turmeric powder
1 cup milk (can be made up from powder, use coconut or soy milk powder if dairy free)
1 cup baby spinach (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
Optional topping – grated parmesan cheese (if not dairy free)

Before leaving home, place the dry ingredients into a blender and process until the cashews are a fine powder. Place this mixture in a zip lock bag or
small container ready to cook.

To prepare, place the dry mix in a small pot, add milk and bring to a gentle simmer stirring constantly. The mixture should thicken quickly. If it gets too thick, add a little water to thin down. Set aside and cook pasta as per packet instructions, drain and then stir through cheese sauce with spinach. Taste and season with salt and pepper as desired and top with a sprinkle of parmesan if using.