Namaste Pasta Dinners: Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free & Allergy-Friendly

Say Cheez, Pasta Pisavera, Taco
$4.99 per 9-ounce box

Reviewed by:
On March 23, 2016
Last modified:March 23, 2016


This whimsical line of boxed meals is completely gluten-free, dairy-free, and even made in a top allergen-free facility. Our review thus far is only of the Say Cheez, which had a pleasant, quite mild cheesy flavor with boisterous brown rice macaroni that our household rate as "pretty good". Unfortunately, the sauce refused to thicken on its own and the two pan preparation made our full meal a little less than convenient.

It’s been a full decade since we first reviewed Namaste Pasta Dinners here on Go Dairy Free. As to be expected, they not only have a new look, but new formulas, so I think it’s time for a fresh taste-testing!

Namaste Pasta Dinners - gluten-free, dairy-free, top allergen-free boxed meals (Say Cheez Non-Dairy Mac & Cheez pictured)

At last check, Namaste Pasta Dinners were available in the same three varieties, all gluten-free, dairy-free, and made in their top allergen-free facility. They’re also available in both the U.S. and Canada – bonus!

I most recently purchased the Say Cheez Non-Dairy Macaroni & Cheez Dinner for a revised review. Quite different from what I remember of the old Say Cheez, the updated recipe is creamier and mellower. It’s pretty good on its own, with only a touch of sharpness and a light cheesy taste. That said, the flavor became quite subdued with any veggie or meat additions, turning into more of a “good” pasta than a cheesy macaroni dinner.

Namaste Pasta Dinners - gluten-free, dairy-free, top allergen-free boxed meals (Say Cheez Non-Dairy Mac & Cheez pictured)

Also, we had some trouble with actually making Say Cheez. The instructions vaguely stated to “heat” oil or margarine with water and the sauce packet, until it “begins to thicken”. Over what heat? For about how long? Should we bring it to a boil or simmer? After a few minutes of watching it go nowhere, I checked the ingredients to see if there was any starch. There wasn’t, so I figured it would be okay to cook it longer, maybe bubbling, to thicken. Nothing, nada, thin soup. We were starving at this point, so I made just a little cornstarch slurry (1 teaspoon) added it to the sauce, bubbled it for 2 minutes and then stirred in the pasta for perfect clingy, sauce-to-noodle results. The sauce is paler in color than most, but it was just enough to fully coat. For future, I would start with less water, maybe half, and then add more as needed.

And while the over-sized macaroni did cook up very quick and efficiently (start checking earlier than you usually would!), and had a rather nice bite for brown rice noodles, I wasn’t fond of the more elaborate sauce preparation altogether. The preparation of Say Cheez requires two pans, a third if you opt to make vegetables or meat to go in the dish as well. It was just slightly more convenient than whipping up a full pasta dinner on my own.

I haven’t had the opportunity to re-trial the Pasta Pisavera or Taco Namaste Pasta Dinners as of yet, and both do appear to be reformulated since my somewhat ancient review. I have a feeling though, that we will like those versions just a bit better, as the ingredients look to pack a bigger flavor punch and perhaps a more simplified preparation. I will update once we’ve trialed them, but feel free to leave your own review of any of the Namaste Pasta Dinners in the comments!

Namaste Pasta Dinners - gluten-free, dairy-free, top allergen-free boxed meals (Say Cheez, Pasta Pisavera, & Taco)

Certifications: Namaste Pasta Dinners are Certified Gluten-Free, Kosher Parve, and Non-GMO Verified.

Dietary Notes: By ingredients, Namaste Foods Soup Cups are dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan / plant-based, and vegetarian. Nonetheless, always read the ingredient statement and check with the company on their manufacturing processes for all varieties if potential allergen cross-contamination is an issue for you. Processes and labeling are subject to change at any time for any company / product.

For More Product Information: Visit the Namaste Foods website at

About Author

Alisa is the founder of, Senior Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.


  1. I live in Northeast Ohio…what stores would I find this product at in my area? I live close to Cleveland. Typical stores I shop at are Heinen’s and Giant Eagle. How would I find out where I could buy these products to try them?

  2. I only use one pot for creating it: cook the pasta as directed, then drain and rinse it in a collander. Using the SAME pot, which you left on the heat, mix/heat the “sauce”, then stir in the pasta, mix to cover it, then you’re done. The only catch with this is with the hot pot you have to immediately start stirring the sauce.

    Also, I agree with the PP, this in no way resembles “cheese”. I do like it, but it is not replacement for real mac and cheese, rather it is an alternative because I have a dairy allergy and cannot have the real stuff. But I absolutely know what I am missing and this does not properly fill that gap.

  3. I would disagree in only one respect: “Say Cheez” blend does not, to my mouth, taste anything remotely like cheese. I love it now, but the first time I tried it (expecting something sort of cheese-like) my taste buds tried to escape my tongue in revolt. I tried it again a few days later, after squashing all memories or thoughts of cheese, and I loved it. It’s a great, spicy –as in very flavorful, NOT hot– dish, which only comes out creamy if you add some milk or non-dairy cream cheese substitute; as it comes in the package, it’s just the consistency of pasta with some butter-like liquid, with small bits of firmer things.
    Good stuff but very, very different from anything I’ve tried before. I would expect kids to hate it if they’re given cause to expect something cheese-like.

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