When you’re craving alfredo sauce and don’t want all the calories, this Creamy Vegan Pasta Sauce will be your saving grace. Made with steamed cauliflower, this dairy free sauce is light and seasoned to creamy alfredo perfection. Go ahead, have a big bowl.
Similar to my recipe for butternut squash pasta sauce, this veggie packed sauce is perfect for picky kids who refuse vegetables, but love pasta.
Who can resist a bowl of creamy pasta!
Those shells are just filled with creamy goodness!
The secret to making vegan cauliflower alfredo sauce is a result of two steps:
1. Pasta water – it’s like a starchy liquid gold that can help turn any pasta sauce into a silky smooth bowl of creaminess.
2. Using a high speed blender. The fluffiness that my Vitamix makes is second to none.
There are many good reasons to make a non-dairy version of vegan alfredo sauce:
- LOTS of added nutrition.
- FEWER calories and fat.
- You can make it AHEAD OF TIME.
- LEFTOVERS are an option. There is no separating into an oily mess when reheated like butter and cream tend to do.
How to Make Vegan Pasta Sauce
Step 1: Steam cauliflower.
Steamed cauliflower is the perfect texture to break down into a silky smooth sauce. With a mild flavor, it’s the perfect base for creamy soups and sauces. I usually don’t like to use “substitutes” for comfort foods, but when it’s healthy + delicious + equally satisfying, I’m all in.
Step 2: Boil Pasta. Reserving pasta water.
It’s super important that you salt your pasta water – a LOT. It makes a HUGE difference in your pasta dishes.
Why reserve pasta water? During the cooking process pasta releases starches into the water. The pasta water has incredible ability to act as a thickener.
While you only use a little bit, you can freeze it for sauces where you might not be making pasta! Just remember, pasta water is your friend.
Step 3: Blend all sauce ingredients including pasta water.
A high speed blender really gives you the results you want here. The Vitamix makes this vegan cauliflower alfredo sauce super smooth.
Step 4: Return pasta + sauce to stock pot. Add peas.
- 1 lb pasta (regular or gluten free) cooked (save the pasta water when you drain it!)
- 1 medium head fresh cauliflower florets steamed (about 4 cups)
- 1/4 tsp each: turmeric, smoked paprika
- 3/4 tsp each: garlic powder onion powder, Kosher salt
- 2 Tbs nutritional yeast optional
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- a few dashes worcestershire or soy sauce
- 2 Tbs olive oil
- 1 cup reserved pasta water
- 1.5 cups frozen peas
- pepper to taste
Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve pasta water when draining.
While the pasta is boiling, steam the cauliflower florets in a large pot lined with a steamer basket. About 15 min until very tender. Drain and place florets in blender.
Add all seasonings, mustard, olive oil, nutritional yeast, soy sauce + 1 cup pasta water into blender with cauliflower. Blend until smooth and creamy.
Return the pasta to the cooking pot with a drizzle of olive oil. Add cauliflower sauce and frozen peas.
Cover and heat pasta on medium-low until peas are defrosted. About 3-4 minutes.
Serve with salt and pepper to taste.
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This was great! I can’t have dairy due to breastfeeding a baby with a milk protein allergy and have been struggling to find tasty things to eat, especially sauces! So although it’s vegan I added meat. We also added mushrooms to the dish and it was wonderful! We ate it for a couple days and my dairy consuming family even enjoyed it! #Guilt-free! I wanted to add a little more pasta water to it after the fact to make it thinner, which is easily customized for your preference while making the sauce. It thickens in the last step so keep that in mind!
Hi Molly! Thanks for these notes – great tips for customizing this recipe to your liking!