Dairy-Free Jalapeño Popper Mac & Cheese

The easiest dairy-free jalapeño popper mac & cheese using a handful of Trader Joe’s ingredients! Creamy, spicy, and so satisfying.

Dairy-Free Jalapeño Popper Mac & Cheese

Happy Trader Joe’s Tuesday! It’s been a minute since I posted a Trader Joe’s product based recipe. I brainstormed some ideas for the next few weeks. This was the first one I scratched off my list. Dairy-free jalapeño popper mac and cheese using their cashew fiesta dip! So, yes. Pretty much my original dairy-free and gluten-free mac and cheese, just jalapeño popper edition. It’s so good with the jalapeño and crumbled turkey bacon. You cannot go wrong with this combination. So savory and delicious.

Trader Joe's Dairy Free Mac And Cheese

What you’ll need for this recipe:

Pasta of choice: I used Banza shells. I’ve been ordering my Banza pasta off amazon just to limit the amount of stores I have to go to. I’m trying to just go to Trader Joe’s. With that being said, Trader Joe’s carries lots of pasta options. Gluten-free included. I just prefer Banza.

Trader Joe’s creamy cashew fiesta dip: who knew that you could use this stuff for more than just dipping chips with!? I love using it to make macaroni and cheese.

Unsweetened non-dairy milk: I like using cashew or almond. Please just make sure it’s NOT flavored. You do not want vanilla taste in this. I’ve made that mistake once. Trust me, it’s not good. Plain nut pods are another great option.


Turkey bacon: I love Trader Joe’s uncured peppered turkey bacon. But, use whatever kind you like! Or use real bacon if you prefer it.

Garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper and olive oil as well! You can also do a little onion powder or nutritional yeast if you’re feeling crazy. However, those are totally optional.

Dairy Free Jalapeno Mac And Cheese - Dash Of Mandi

Other Trader Joe’s recipes you will love:

Shrimp street corn enchiladas

Greek risoni salad

Hot street corn dip

Salsa verde shrimp

Vegetarian quesadilla

Gorgonzola gnocchi meal

I can’t wait to create more Trader Joe’s recipes. If you have any requests (certain products, a recipe idea) comment below and let me know! I’m always looking for suggestions. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!

Dairy Free And Gluten Free Mac & Cheese
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Dairy-Free Jalapeño Popper Mac & Cheese



8 oz. gluten-free pasta shells, or pasta of choice, cooked according to package instructions

1 container Trader Joe’s cashew fiesta dip

1/3 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk

1/2 tsp paprika

Pinch of garlic powder

Pinch of cayenne and onion powder, optional

Salt and pepper

1 tbsp olive oil

2 strips of turkey bacon, cooked and crumbled

1 large jalapeno, seeds and ribs removed, finely chopped, leave a few thin slices for topping


In a large soup pot add olive oil over medium heat.

Add diced jalapeños and cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add cashew fiesta dip, milk, paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Add onion powder and cayenne if desired.

Mix everything together, keep stirring until it’s smooth, creamy and heated.

Once smooth, add pasta in.

Mix and fully coat the pasta in the “cheese” sauce. 

Add to a bowl and top with turkey bacon crumbles.

Top with jalapeño slices, add more cracked pepper if desired and enjoy! 

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