This is a simple, no-fuss pasta dish perfect for weeknights when you’re short on time. Aside from cashews and nutritional yeast, most of the ingredients are standard everyday grocery items, making it not only convenient but also very affordable. In Australia the ingredients for this meal cost roughly $7 and it serves four people – that’s just $1.75 per serve! Not bad.
Cashew nuts are the hero ingredient for this dish – their mild flavour and high fat content makes the sauce smooth and creamy. Before going vegan, I used to love the taste of cream-laden pastas (helloooo Carbonara) but I could never finish a full serving because the dairy based sauce was just too rich. Thankfully this vegan version is just as delicious but much lighter on the stomach!
I use frozen peas with this recipe because they’re convenient (and I love peas). But you could swap these for any other green veggie you’d like, or even add some cooked vegan chicken pieces to boost the protein content. I usually top this with smoked paprika, but chilli oil or chilli flakes also give it a nice kick. It’s really a very simple recipe that you can get creative with and flavour-up as much as you’d like.
Quick and Easy Vegan Creamy Pasta
- 500 g pasta of choice
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1/2 cup soy milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 cup frozen peas (optional)
- smoked paprika (optional, to serve)
- chilli flakes or oil (optional, to serve)
- Boil kettle. Cover cashews with boiling water and leave to soak for ~10 mins.
- Measure out all other ingredients (except pasta and peas) into blender and set aside.
- Cook pasta according to packet instructions. Add the frozen peas for the final 2 minutes of cooking time.
- Drain cashews, add to blender with the other ingredients. Blend on high until smooth to make the sauce.
- Once pasta and peas are cooked, drain the water. Return peas and pasta to the same pot.
- Pour sauce over pasta, season with salt and pepper and gently stir though.
- Dust with smoked paprika or chilli (optional) and serve immediately.
- You can substitute peas for any other vegetable you like - I suggest broccoli, broccolini, brussel sprouts or asparagus.
- This is best eaten straight away, the texture of the cream becomes a little grainy when reheated. It won’t hurt you but it’s not quite as smooth 😉