Before we get started on this, I’ll tell you that I’m not a vegan but The Kid has a dairy allergy so we make a lot of dairy free recipes. Vegan just happens to make dairy free life much easier so we use vegan cheese and all kinds of vegan tricks. From time to time, The Kid will ask me what something tastes like.
I try my best to describe it, but have you ever tried to describe mozzarella or milk to someone who has never had it or anything dairy? It’s not easy. Last night The Kid mentioned alfredo sauce and requested that we somehow give it a try. I googled a bit and saw that nuts are often a substitute for cream cheese and creamy cheese-like vegan condiments.
I hit up the bulk section earlier and got a handful of cashews to give alfredo sauce a whirl. The result? A major two thumbs up and a few fist pumps from a non-vegan. Damn, this sauce was good! I mean, whoa. I could have sipped it from the blender. I refrained. I even shared and saved some for later. Once I ran the calories on it, I decided on the spot that I could do without real alfredo in my life.
Vegan Alfredo Pasta Sauce
- 1/3 cup (69g) unsalted roasted cashews
- 1/4 cup (35g) yellow onion
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk
- Approximately 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 lemon (See note)
Place the cashews in a bowl or mug and cover with water. Let them soak for 4 – 6 hours so that they soften and blend better. Slice the onion and garlic, and heat a pan over medium heat. Cook the onion and garlic until browned. I used a non-stick pan but didn’t use any spray or oil.
Drain the cashews and add them to a blender or Magic Bullet. Add the onion, garlic, and almond milk. Blend until smooth. Add the salt and stir well. Taste and add more salt if you prefer. Stir in the lemon juice just before serving.
Makes 4 servings at approximately 65 calories each – 2g protein, 3g carbs, 5g fat.
- None of the amount of ingredients in this recipe have to be exact. I measured purely for the purpose of calculating the calories and macros for you. Basically you can use a handful of cashews, some sliced onions and garlic, and a splash of almond milk so that it blends well. Salt to taste and you’re done. Play with it and don’t stress over being exact.
- The lemon adds just a bit of tang since you don’t have cream in the sauce for that. If you are going to use some of the sauce as leftovers later, don’t add the lemon juice until right before serving. The lemon juice may curdle it if you save it and cause clumps in your sauce. It won’t hurt you, but bleh. Clumps are not what you want in a sauce.
- You probably don’t want to skip the salt step. The cashews and almonds have an almost sweet flavor to them, so you want some salt to balance that flavor out and make it more alfredo.
- You can probably use unsweetened soy milk here instead of the almond milk. I try to avoid soy so we don’t have it on hand for the most part.
I grilled chicken breasts and steamed some broccoli florets for dinner. I gave sliced chicken, broccoli and zucchini noodles a quick toss with the sauce and fell in love! Holy smokes it was absolutely worth the 4 hour wait to soak those dang cashews. The entire dinner came to 27g protein, 13g carbs, and 9g fat for 241 calories.
I squealed a bit. Yeah, that happened.