Home Healthy Recipes The Best Vegan Kimchi Mac and Cheese

The Best Vegan Kimchi Mac and Cheese

by Kaitlynn Fenley

Vegan kimchi mac and cheese is easy to make and loaded with flavor! This slightly spicy mac and cheese comes together in just 30 minutes and is the perfect side dish for any lunch or dinner.

Homemade Kimchi Mac and Cheese

Everyone on the internet makes “the best” mac and cheese, right? Well, I really do think that this is the best vegan kimchi mac and cheese!

If you’ve been a blog reader for a while, you know I am obsessed with our homemade kimchi. I eat it almost every single day. It adds delicious flavor to so many dishes.

vegan kimchi mac and cheese in a white pot

Kimchi Mac and Cheese

I like to call this kimchi mac and cheese recipe “kimchi mac” for short.

Kimchi is one of the best fermented foods around! It’s a cabbage-based fermented vegetable product with lots of spice and heat from the Gochugaru pepper. Kimchi usually includes garlic and onion as well.

There are over 200 kinds of kimchi, though. While I still call my kimchi “kimchi” what I make is more like a kimchi-inspired spicy sauerkraut. I highly suggest making some at home, but store-bought kimchi works well too.

You can buy authentic Korean kimchi at any Asian market and even at Whole Foods. If you’re looking for vegan kimchi, try our recipe here.

vegan kimchi mac and cheese on a white plate, mixed with a cashew cheese sauce made with kimchi, topped with red chili flakes

Vegan Macaroni and Cheese with Kimchi

This vegan recipe is a little bit healthier than traditional macaroni and cheese. I like to start this recipe by making the cheese sauce first.

The trick to the perfect vegan cheese sauce is using raw cashews. Using roasted cashews results in a cheese sauce that’s a little gritty. No one wants that. Also, don’t skimp on the soaking step. I like to soak my cashews for at least an hour, making the sauce easier to blend.

For this recipe, I adapted the cheese sauce recipe from our Simple and Creamy Vegan Pasta with Pumpkin Alfredo Sauce blog and substituted the sauerkraut brine for kimchi brine.

Pasta for kimchi mac and cheese

You can use any pasta in this recipe. If you are gluten-free, brown rice pasta works well. My favorite to use is Jovial brown rice elbow noodles.

If you are not vegan, try using fettuccine noodles and topping the pasta with marinated grilled chicken! It’s absolutely delicious.

More Recipes with Kimchi

kimchi mac and cheese on a black fork resting on a white plate

The Best Vegan Kimchi Mac & Cheese

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Vegan kimchi mac and cheese is easy to make and loaded with flavor! This slightly spicy mac and cheese comes together in just 30 minutes and is the perfect side dish for lunch or dinner. 

  • Author: Kaitlynn Fenley
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 6 Servings
  • Category: Pasta
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


Vegan Cheese Sauce

  • 1 1/2 Cups Raw Cashews, Soaked and Drained
  • 3 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/4 Cup Kimchi Brine
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Nutmeg
  • 1 Teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 2 Teaspoons Salt
  • 1 Cup Plant-Based Milk 


  • 12 Ounces Noodles
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Minced Garlic
  • 1/2 Cup Kimchi
  • 1 Tablespoon Sriracha
  • 2 Tablespoons Chili Onion Oil


  1. To soak cashews, place them in a glass bowl, pour boiling water over them and let them soak for 1 hour.
  2. Boil water and cook the noodles according to the directions on the package.
  3. In a high-speed blender combine all of the sauce ingredients, and blend on high until smooth.
  4. In a pot over medium heat, add the oil and garlic. Cook until the garlic starts to brown.
  5. Reduce the heat to low and add the blended sauce to the garlic and oil. Stir continuously until the sauce is heated. (You can add more milk if you feel the sauce is too thick).
  6. Add the pasta to the sauce and toss to combine. 
  7. Add in the kimchi and sriracha, and mix to combine evenly.
  8. Serve drizzled with chili oil and enjoy! 


  • for chili onion oil, I used the “chili onion crunch” from Trader Joe’s 

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Nutrition information is auto-calculated and estimated as close as possible. We are not responsible for any errors. We have tested the recipe for accuracy, but your results may vary.

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Kaitlynn Fenley Author, Educator, Food Microbiologist
Kaitlynn is a food microbiologist and fermentation expert teaching people how to ferment foods and drinks at home.

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