Vegan Roasted Squash Garlic Nacho Cheese

There was a point in time I ate so much squash that my skin started to turn slightly orange hued.  I try to vary my diet a little more now, but maybe I am still a little orange since all year round I am eating squash, sweet potatoes and carrots at least once a day.  But not as much as the every day squash dinner that I used to do.  I was pretty obsessed in the Fall and Winter. I mean, it is pretty delicious, and I pretty much love it any way that it is prepared.  Roasted and stuffed is my favorite.  But sometimes you end up with a giant squash, and you bake one side for dinner to stuff and have an extra one, so what do you do with that? Well, I like to swap it out for pumpkin in baked goods, add it to hummus, or add it to things you don't expect it in.  Like mac and cheese, or the Vegan Roasted Squash Garlic Nacho cheese I made last week.  I honestly did not set out to make nacho cheese, I set out to make a roasted garlic squash dip that I decided would be good made into a nacho cheese with something rich like cashew butter added to it.

So, it morphed into nacho cheese.  I have corn tortilla chips on hand at all times, because they are my crunchy savory indulgence of choice with guac or salsa, so I was excited about the idea of nacho cheese.  I remember back in middle school, for lunch I would buy nachos with cheese a lot. I know, totally not healthy, and I am sure it was not real cheese but that didn't stop me and I don't think I cared about healthy food at that point, I loved the stuff. I mean, who doesn't love gooey nacho cheese until they find out what is actually in it?!  Funny story though, one time at lunch (still in middle school), someone accidentally spilled nacho cheese on my head.  It was a gooey mess, and I was not happy at the time, but now looking back in it the situation was kind of funny. It didn't deter me from eating it though.  It was a middle school lunch favorite for me.  As an adult though, I don't think I have actually eaten nacho cheese ever.  Because I have tried to eat healthy since I was about 18, and the fake stuff in the usual nacho cheese was unappealing.  But...the idea of a healthy nacho cheese made with squash sounded awesome!  I could enjoy one of my old favorites and it would still be healthy!

So, I was excited about this nacho cheese.  It is mostly squash, but the ingredient that makes it so good is the 4 heads of roasted garlic I added.  Before you go thinking 4 heads???  Yes, but when roasted they mellow out and become super delicious and almost a little sweet and rich.  I added cashew butter to that to make it silky and cheesy as well as some nutritional yeast and miso to give it even more of a cheesy flavor.  And, nacho cheese needs a little kick so it needed chipotle powder as well.  It turned out sooo good!  I am not going to lie, I ate most of a batch with my chips in one sitting. If you are looking for a healthier nacho cheese alternative, give this recipe a try!

Vegan Roasted Squash Garlic Nacho Cheese
Makes about 1 1/2 cups

Ingredients:

  • 4 heads garlic
  • 1 cup cooked squash
  • 3/4 cup filtered water
  • 1/2 cup cashew butter
  • 1 Tbsp white miso
  • 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt or to taste

 

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425F degrees.
  2. Cut just the tops off of each head of garlic to expose the cloves, then wrap them in foil.
  3. Place the garlic in the oven and roast for about 45 minutes to 1 hour until the garlic is soft and tender.  Remove from the oven and let cool.
  4. Squeeze the garlic cloves out of the papery skins into a blender or food processor.
  5. Add all other ingredients and blend until smooth.
  6. Enjoy!
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About the Author

I am a vegan girl who loves to make healthier desserts and dishes with lots of veggies. Recipes are meant to be shared, that is why I started blogging!

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