I am in love with this Vegan Alfredo sauce pasta because it’s rich , creamy, lemony , garlicy and cheesy with simple healthy ingredients.Don’t be fooled by this creamy bowl of pasta that you see here. This alfredo pasta sauce is creamy without heavy cream , milk , cream cheese , butter , cheese or flour. Yes yes its completely dairy free . Unlike the classic Bechamel this white sauce for pasta is gluten free too.
The highlight of this recipe is the Creamy Alfredo Sauce that is completely vegan and healthy! This creamy pasta sauce is made with cashew and cauliflower. Shhhh!!! Don’t tell your kids. It’s our little secret. I call it as hidden vegetable pasta sauce.Make it and you will be surprised how can something be so creamy without dairy or flour.
Today I will also show you how to make this amazing combo of Vegan Fettucine Alfredo plus the Alfredo sauce in one shot directly in an Instant Pot .You may choose to make it the traditional way on the stove top too because duh!! this is how we did it before Instant Pot.
You can use your choice of pasta like penne, spaghetti , rigatoni , elbow etc. This time it was Vegan Fettucine Alfredo for us .
The main purpose of sharing this recipe is to share this awesome Vegan Alfredo sauce that I am making since a year. Once I started making Alfredo sauce dairy free I never went back to the classic way.
You guys this vegan Alfredo sauce is to die for. No tofu or coconut milk in this vegan Alfredo sauce. It’s completely soy free. As much I enjoy pasta with store bought jar sauce for convenience, this Alfredo sauce pasta recipe is a keeper. Making this sauce isn’t tedious at all . Homemade always tastes fresh and amazing!!
I have tried many non dairy versions of creamy white sauce in the past. Used everything from coconut milk to silken tofu. I even used almond flour and almond milk to make gluten free vegan bechamel . All these versions tasted great in their own way. The only problem with these ingredients was that their taste was pretty prominent in the sauce. For example I could totally taste the coconut in coconut based sauce or taste the almond in almond based sauce. I felt like I was just settling for a plant based alternative.
The moment I tried this combination of cauliflower and cashews I was so satisfied. This is the closest you can get to the dairy based alfredo sauce. You cannot taste cauliflower or cashews in it at all. The texture is light , rich and creamy . This cauliflower based cream sauce mimics heavy cream sauce so well. Even your non vegan friends will go WOW!!!!
How to make Vegan Alfredo sauce with cauliflower ?
This creamy vegan white sauce is made with handful of cashews and loads of cauliflower. Yes you read it right a CAULIFLOWER sauce!! And no it doesn’t taste like cauliflower puree or soup. Cashews add richness to this cauliflower sauce which otherwise is possible with butter or oil. Adding lots of garlic , combination of fresh and dried herbs plus good seasoning is the key to get cauliflower taste this amazing!!! For some cheesy flavor like I have used combination of nutritional yeast aka nooch and lemon.
How does Vegan Alfredo sauce made with cauliflower and cashew taste?
This vegan alfredo sauce tastes rich and creamy just like the Alfredo sauce made with loads of butter , cream cheese or heavy cream. But this cauliflower alfredo is healthy and completely plant based good for you sauce.
Can I make vegan alfredo sauce without cashews ( nut free ) ?
Yes you may skip nuts , but you will have to add 2 tablespoon oil instead to get the rich and creamy texture of vegan sauce .
Can I skip nutritional yeast ?
Nutritional yeast is good . Not only for flavor but it comes with lot of health benefits. You will find it in all departmental stores and online. If you cannot find it then skip it. I have added it for giving cheesy flavor to the sauce. You may substitute it with store bought vegan Parmesan cheese too.
Why make Pasta in an Instant Pot?
Pick and choose my excuse- Hectic life , running behind my 1 year old who is learning to walk, piled up daily chores or may be sheer laziness . I prefer cooking One Pot Meals in my Instant Pot everyday because of it’s shut and forget convenience. I love dump and cook recipes in a pressure cooker and making pasta in an Instant Pot means no monitoring or draining. Just throw all ingredients in , set the timer and walk off. When done, open , stir and dig in!! Pasta cooks great in the Instant Pot . Pasta is one dish that is a no brainer when it comes to making dinner because it is loved by my 7 year old as well as 1 year old . So dinner is sorted without frowning or nagging.
One more reason to make Vegan Alfredo sauce pasta in my Instant Pot is that it uses no drain method . The starch in the boiled pasta water makes the Alfredo sauce more creamier and gets well coated with every pasta used.
If you are planning to make pasta on the stove top make sure to reserve some pasta water before draining.
What is the pasta water ratio in an Instant Pot?
I like my pasta Al dente and not soft or mushy. Check the cooking time mentioned on the Pasta label. Cut it into half while making pasta in an Instant Pot . High Pressure & quick release.
Can I make gluten free pasta in Instant Pot?
I have tried rice noodles while testing Pad Thai recipe in Instant Pot and it was all gummy and sticky. I have not tried other gluten free varieties yet. But if I experiment , I will surly share it with you.
How to make pasta in an Instant Pot ?
You will need a long leg trivet to cook pot in pot method . If you do not have one you may choose to make the sauce separately the same day or beforehand.
I have used the combination of lemon and nutritional yeast to make this vegan sauce taste more cheesy without cheese.
You may skip it .
I have used herb de provence which is an Italian herb blend made up of fennel, lavender, thyme, basil, marjoram, parsley, oregano, tarragon, and rosemary . It takes the pasta to a different level. Tastes like fine dining restaurant dish. Use herb blend of your choice.
Given below is a pictorial collage followed by the Vegan Alfredo sauce pasta recipe-
Vegan Alfredo Sauce Pasta recipe-
Vegan alfredo sauce pasta (cashew cauliflower sauce ) Instant pot friendly
Once you try this skinny version Vegan Alfredo sauce pasta made with rich and creamy cashew cauliflower cream you will never go back to dairy ( heavy cream sauce ) again. Easy Instant Pot pasta recipe.
- 2 teaspoon oil *
- 8 oz Fettuccine approx. half a box
- 4 cloves garlic minced or pre roasted garlic
- 2 teaspoon lemon zest * optional
- 1 teaspoon herb de Provence or dried Italian herb mix of choice
- Fistful chopped fresh parsley *
- Couple twists pepper
- Salt to taste
- Enough water to cover the pasta noodles .
For Cashew Cauliflower cream sauce
- ¼ cup raw cashews
- 300 grams or 2 cups cauliflower florets
- 2 tablespoon nutritional yeast for cheesy flavor
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder or dried onion flakes *
- 2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/3 rd cup or more chilled water to thin the sauce
- Salt to taste
- Couple twists pepper
No need to soak cashews beforehand . It steams and softens perfectly.
Hit Sauté button on the IP .
Add oil and roast garlic for 30 seconds. If going oil free then sauté garlic with 2 tablespoon water.
Cancel Sauté mode.
Break the pasta noodles in half to fit the pot.
Add in enough water to cover the fettuccine.
Add in lemon zest and salt.
Now place the long leg trivet on top. Refer to pictorial above.
Place cauliflower & cashews on the steaming rack and place it on the trivet.
Put on the Instant Pot lid and position the black knob to SEALING.
Hit MANUAL 6 minutes HIGH PRESSURE.
Once the IP beeps, Perform a quick release with back of a spoon.
IMPORTANT- Always place a kitchen towel on the knob before turning it to VENTING for Quick release.
When the silver pin drops it is safe to open the Instant Pot.
Carefully take out the softened cauliflower.
With a fork or tongs separate the pasta as they tend to stick together a bit.
If you still see water , don’t worry it will become our thick sauce and will soon be absorbed by the pasta.
Use chilled water or Place cauliflower cashews in cold water and drain to cool it down.
In a blender add everything called for cauliflower cheese sauce.
Blend for 30 seconds or until smooth.
We are looking for thick apple sauce consistency.
Scoop 2 cups of sauce or more in the pasta or as needed.
Add in pepper .
Give it a quick mix to coat the pasta.
Add in some chopped parsley and reserve some for garnish.
Taste test and adjust seasoning if desired.
Use salt responsibly as pasta and sauce both calls for it. Add little and you can always add some later.
I have used chilled water to quickly cool down the cashew cauliflower mixture for blending as soon as I can.
You may make the cauliflower cream sauce before hand and cook pasta on stove top too.
Makes approx 3 cups of sauce.
You may make a big batch of this sauce by increasing the recipe.
Storing cashew cauliflower cream sauce-
Stays well in the fridge up to 3 days and freezes well in freezer safe bags/ containers up to 3 months.
If making this pasta recipe oil free –
Add warm water to the pot as fettuccine or spaghetti type of pasta tends to stick or clump together. Just microwave 2 cups of water and add to the pot or add two cups of water to the pot and let it warm up covered on sauté mode .Then add pasta , push it down with a spoon and top with more normal water if needed until pasta is covered with water. It won’t happen with shorter pastas like penne or rotini. (I have tested this pasta recipe oil free)
What Pasta Water ratio to use in Instant Pot –
Always half of what is mentioned on the package and QR for al dente pasta.
Lemon zest brings out the flavor of this cashew cauliflower sauce , but is completely optional.
Lemon juice brings out the cheesy flavor in this vegan white sauce. So do not skip it.
Skip onion flakes or powder if you don’t have.
Sub parsley with herb of your choice. You may use pasta like penne, bowtie, rotini and spaghetti, elbow too.
Makes a great hidden vegetable pasta sauce for vegan mac and cheese.
Can you make Gluten Free pasta in Instant Pot-
I have not tested this Instant Pot recipe with Gluten Free pasta. You can always cook the traditional way over a cook top. I don’t want my GF friends missing on to this delicious vegan creamy pasta sauce.
You may drizzle some olive oil on the pasta just before serving. But won't be needed.
This Vegan Alfredo sauce pasta recipe is light enough for everyday meal and rich enough for Birthday’s , Valentine’s and Anniversary dinner.
Pin this recipe for later reference-
Hope you like this easy recipe on how to make Vegan Alfredo sauce pasta in cashew cauliflower cream sauce and give it a try. Let me know if you have any questions below in the comment section. Never miss a recipe . If you like being here do subscribe to my blog.Make sure you have us in your contact list so that the recipe does not land in spam folder. Carveyourcraving(at)gmail(dot)com .
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