5-Ingredient Quinoa Mac and Cheese

5-ingredient Quinoa Mac and Cheese....with a super healthy secret ingredient. Click to find out!

Seriously is there anything better than a bite of super creamy, cheesy goodness? It’s pretty much heaven on earth if you ask me.

Still to this day, even though I know how awful it is for me, I sometimes crave Kraft macaroni and cheese. It’s so weird, because that was never anything that I even ate growing up (we were an Annie’s family all the way). There’s just something about that box of junk delicious pasta that makes my mouth water (eww…I’m grossed out just writing that).

But for those of us who like to eat healthy not shove our faces with that orange-tinged pasta gook, you need to search for alternatives.

5-ingredient Quinoa Mac and Cheese....with a super healthy secret ingredient. Click to find out!

Which is exactly what we’re doing today. And we’re making it as easy as humanly possible.

The base of this quinoa mac and cheese is not the heavy cream or milk that you’re used to. In fact, we’ve used butternut squash to create the ultra creamy sauce. Instead of noodles, we opted for quinoa (which is packed with protein and nutrients of course). We’ve got a little cheese thrown into the mix, but for those of you vegans I’m sure Daiya or an alternatve.

So basically, what I’m saying here, is that is a 100% guilt free mac n’ cheese recipe that your entire family with gobble up – even the kiddos. It’s seriously addicting.

5-ingredient Quinoa Mac and Cheese....with a super healthy secret ingredient. Click to find out!

And since everyone loves mac n’ cheese…actually I don’t know if I’ve ever met a person that doesn’t like mac n’ cheese…I have a few more exciting things to tell you about that come along with this recipe.

This quinoa mac n’ cheese recipe is part of Mac and Cheese Mania being hosted by Rachel Cooks and Nutmeg Nanny! Which means, you all have the chance to win some super great prizes :)

Here’s what we’ve got: Door to Door Organics Gift Cards, OXO Gift Baskets, Zak Designs Prize Pack, a year’s supply of Cabot cheese, a Vermont Creamery gift basket, a risotto kit from Marx Foods, Barilla pasta, Anolon Advanced Bronze 4.5 Qt. Tapered Stockpot, Rachael Ray Stoneware Casseroval, Wusthof CLASSIC Studio Block Set, Microplane Graters and Kitchen Tools, a SavorX Starter Block with spices and Le Cordon Bleu by Swissmar oven to table roasters.

Yes, yes, and yes!!

5-ingredient quinoa mac n' cheese....for #maccheesemania

All you have to do to be entered to win is head on over to one of these lovely lady’s blog and link up your own mac and cheese recipe. And no, you don’t have to be a blogger, anyone can enter!!

Enter here at Rachel Cooks

Enter here at Nutmeg Nanny

Good luck to all who choose to enter!

And pretty please tell me what you think of this quinoa mac and cheese recipe! I swear, it’s like my favorite meal on the planet right now…

5-Ingredient Quinoa Mac and Cheese

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 4 - 6



  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Peel and seed butternut squash. Chop into 1" chunks, add to a stock pot, cover with 1" of water and boil until fork tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and transfer to a blender.
  3. Add almond milk and dijon mustard into blender and blend on high until silky smoothy and creamy. Add more milk as needed - texture should be thick, but easily pourable.
  4. Transfer to a bowl and add quinoa and cheese. Stir until combined.
  5. Spoon mac n' cheese into ramekins (or baking dish), smooth tops and bake for 20 - 30 minutes, until bubbly.
  6. Remove from oven, cool slightly and enjoy immediately.


Additional spice options:
- Paprika
- Tumeric
- Chili powder
- Hot sauce
- Salt & pepper

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Mac and Cheese Mania is being sponsored by Door to Door Organics and OXO.

About Queen of Quinoa

Alyssa Rimmer is the quinoa obsessed girl behind the gluten-free blog, the Queen of Quinoa. She loves experimenting with nutritious and whole-food ingredients, and seeks to encourage the everyday home chef that cooking and eating gluten-free can not only be healthy, but also delicious and fun. After struggling with stomach issues throughout her college years, Alyssa decided enough was enough and took her health into her own hands. She started by removing gluten from her diet and hasn’t looked back since. Two happy years have passed and her stomach issues have practically disappeared. Living gluten-free has also helped her to truly discover her passion for cooking and she has embraced her new lifestyle with open arms. With the Queen of Quinoa, Alyssa shares her gluten-free recipes, many of which are focused on the superfood quinoa, and discusses her journey to living a more fulfilled and healthy life. She now also cooks refined sugar-free and although not all her of recipes are vegan, she has loved learning and experimenting with vegan baking. She lives in Burlington, Vermont where she is surrounded by fresh, local produce and is always inspired by the fabulous seasonal ingredients that make this state so special. She is excited to share her recipes with you, as she helps to uncover the amazing world of quinoa.
This entry was posted in Allergy Friendly, Corn-Free, Egg-free, Entrees, Events, Gluten-free, Lunch, Nut-Free, Pasta, Quinoa, Recipe Index, Refined Sugar-Free, Sides, Soy-Free and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

44 Responses to 5-Ingredient Quinoa Mac and Cheese

  1. Yesssss, I love quinoa but hot cheesy quinoa looks even better. Love this!
    Becca @ Amuse Your Bouche recently posted..Macaroni cheese frittersMy Profile

  2. I am still training myself to totally be IN LOVE with quinoa…but adding all the cheese is DEFINITELY gonna help spur that along. Plus, squash is my fav ever.
    Love that this has only 5 ingredients and is healthy!
    Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness recently posted..Chicken Zoodle Soup {Gluten Free, Low calorie, Low Fat + High Protein}My Profile

  3. Oh yum – sounds like a winner to me!
    Tiff @ Love Sweat & Beers recently posted..Weekend WinsMy Profile

  4. Sarah says:

    Ohhh this sounds so interesting! I’ll be trying this one for sure.
    Sarah recently posted..Roasted Poblano and Goat Cheese MacMy Profile

  5. Rachel Cooks says:

    Love this (and I love Annie’s too…haha). Thanks for contributing this to mac and cheese mania!!!
    Rachel Cooks recently posted..Macaroni and Cheese Pizza with Bacon and Green OnionsMy Profile

  6. This looks soooo good!!!
    Lori @ RecipeGirl recently posted..SOLO Simple But Good Recipe ContestMy Profile

  7. I am always looking for more uses for quinoa, this is such a wonderful idea!
    Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts recently posted..French Onion Mac N’ Cheese #maccheesemaniaMy Profile

  8. Sarah says:

    In a pinch, would pumpkin puree work just as well?

    Looks delicious – can’t wait to try it!

  9. Joanne says:

    I love that this is basically good for me in every way! Such a healthy alternative when that mac craving hits.
    Joanne recently posted..Mexican Fiesta Chopped SaladMy Profile

  10. JulieD says:

    I love this to pieces…going to have to try it with quinoa! thanks!
    JulieD recently posted..Easy Broccoli Cheddar Cheese SoupMy Profile

  11. Kim Beaulieu says:

    This is such a cool recipe. I love that you used quinoa. I’ve never seen goat cheddar. Now I’m intrigued, need to hit the city in search of it.
    Kim Beaulieu recently posted..Smoked Bacon Macaroni and Cheese #maccheesemaniaMy Profile

    • I love goat cheddar! I’m sensitive to cow’s milk, so goat cheddar is a great alternative. I use it on pizza, grilled cheeses, you name it! You can purchase it at Trader Joe’s if you have one near you :)

  12. Guilt free mac & cheese… I like it!
    Laurie {Simply Scratch} recently posted..Crispy Baked Onion Petals + Fry SauceMy Profile

  13. Terry Lynn says:

    Okay, so I made this today and I want to portion it for separate meal, it mentions 4-6 servings, can you give me an estimate on how many calories there would be in a serving, this will help me decide on the size, otherwise I am liable to eat the whole thing! ha ha :) I have weakness for cheese and it doesn’t help that I LOVE quinoa!!

    • Hi Terry, thrilled you liked mac and cheese! I actually don’t calculate the calories on my recipes, but there are tons of free online tools you can use to plug in the ingredients and it will tell you all the nutritional information :)

  14. I love the idea of using quinoa instead of pasta. It definitely delivers more in the way of nutrition. Plus the addition of butternut squash totally takes it over the top. Thank you so much helping Rachel and I make this event a success!
    Brandy O’Neill recently posted..Skillet Cheesy Gnocchi with Peas and HamMy Profile

  15. Melanie says:

    Oh yum, that’s so cool that you put butternut squash inside the mac and cheese for creaminess. The mac and cheese looks deliciously mouth watering. How did you learn to take beautiful pictures? Your’e pictures are gorgeous!
    Melanie recently posted..Raw Pasta on a PlateMy Profile

  16. Christine says:

    I can’t wait to try this but my family and I are not fans of squash and I never buy it. I haven’t cooked with quinoa as of yet and wondered would carrots work? I have used carrots as a sneaky ingredient in a lot of my dishes.

    • I don’t think that carrots would be the same. What about sweet potatoes? Or you could also try pumpkin (although the flavor would be a little different). I’m going to give it a whirl with carrots and see if it works. Will be sure to let you know!

  17. Kathleen R. says:

    This looks yummy! I’ve never made anything with quinoa before but I think I might just have to try this!!
    Kathleen R. recently posted..healthy peanut butter, chocolate chip, banana muffins.My Profile

  18. Stepf says:

    So when making this do you cook the quinoa first or just put it all together and bake?

  19. Tiffanie says:

    Would frozen squash work with this?

  20. Pingback: How Meatless Mondays Can Save You Money

  21. Samantha C. says:

    I made this for dinner last night and loved it! I have to admit, I used a brick of Birdseye frozen butternut squash to save time but it worked wonderfully! I stirred the almond milk, cheese, and spices to create a seriously smooth, silky cheese sauce. (I used about a tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1/4 tsp dry mustard, and a pinch of cayenne and nutmeg — I left out the Dijon and used dry mustard instead.) Seriously, just a pinch of nutmeg makes the biggest difference in homemade mac & cheese and it complements the butternut squash as well :) I have always wanted to “love” a butternut squash mac and cheese and this is the first one I’ve tried that isn’t overwhelmingly squash-y. I have a feeling this is going to be an oft-repeated meal :)

    • Yay!!!! So happy you liked it. I’m definitely going to add the nutmeg next time, sounds delish! Now that I’ve made this mac and cheese, I’m dreaming up other ways to change it up. I’m going to try carrot next I think :)

  22. Thanks for sharing this recipe. It looks delicious! AllFreeCasseroleRecipes.com has featured it on our blog, Cheap Eats and Thrifty Crafts. You can check it out here: http://www.cheapeatsthriftycrafts.com/meatless-mondays-can-save-money/
    Emily Ramirez recently posted..28 Baby Hats and Baby BootiesMy Profile

  23. Jamie says:

    Do you know how much of this is one serving and how many calories in a serving? Thanks…so going to try this

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