Alfredo sauce is a classic Italian pasta sauce, usually made with cream, butter and cheese. Well…let’s throw all those away and start from scratch. 🙂
I was torn between making a plain old cashew cheese sauce for my pasta and an herb pesto, so I decided to combine the two and throw in some avocados because, DUH. Avocados are always a good choice.
I call this an “alfredo” simply because of the texture. It doesn’t share any ingredients or techniques but is it perfectly creamy, luxurious and simple.
I must give an (unpaid) plug for my favorite vegan mock meat beef crumbles here – from a company called “beyond meat”. It has been a staple in our house since discovering it at the beginning of this year. It is incredibly similar in texture to ground beef and has us buying it as quickly as they can stock it at the co-op. It takes a few minutes to heat up (from frozen) on the stove and then I toss it in my pasta, rice, burritos, tacos, etc…super versatile.
prep before hand – soak 1/3 c raw, unsalted cashews for at least 6 hours.
makes approx. 1 cup of sauce. Enough for 3-4 servings.
- 1 ripe avocados, amounting to 1/2- 3/4 cup of flesh (some avocados are deceiving by looking large until you cut them open and discover a HUGE pit! I always have two ready for this in case one is not enough)
- 1/3 c soaked cashews, drained and rinsed well
- 1/4 c olive oil or sunflower oil (or whatever oil you prefer)
- 2 small cloves garlic, minced
- juice from 1 lemon, amounting to 1/4 c
- handful of fresh herbs, I used a combination of mint, parsley and basil
- 1/2 c nutritional yeast aka “nooch” (non-vegan can sub parmesan cheese if necessary)
- 1/4 t fine grain salt
- optional – red pepper flakes for topping
Put avocado, cashews, oil, garlic, lemon and salt into your blender or food processor. Blend until fairly smooth. If necessary, you can add more lemon if it seems to thick to blend well.
Once smooth, add the nutritional yeast one tablespoon at a time with the blender running. Blend until incorporated. I can never get this completely smooth, but soaking the cashews prevents any graininess.
Taste and adjust salt or nutritional yeast if necessary.
This sauce will last in the fridge, covered, for about 3-4 days! I was surprised that it didn’t brown but it must be from all that lemon in there. 🙂
Toss with warm pasta so that the sauce melts.
Chiffonade (roll tightly and slice thinly) your fresh herbs and toss with the pasta as well.
Extra nooch on top is always welcomed. I do love to add a pinch of red pepper flakes on my pasta, though totally optional.