OMG this sauce is SO BOMB you guys!!!
I love creamy Alfredo sauces, but I can’t eat them because they are filled with cream, cheese and tons of butter (all my fellow non-dariy babes totally get it.) Not to mention, it is SO full of fat, super heavy, and jam packed with TONS of calories. Too many calories for it’s own good- that’s why it tastes so damn amazing…but that isn’t very good for a healthy diet. Or your waist line.
It’s the type of food that is kept for a special meal, a once-in-a-while meal. But I don’t want to have it only once in a while. I want it a lot and I want it to be good for me!
So I wanted to figure out a way to make a creamy sauce that was simple, low in calories and totally dairy-free…but still absolutely delicious. This is usually not a simple task- most vegan versions of creamy sauces include coconut cream or cashew cream, which are great ingredients but still a bit heavy. Lots of good fats, but still super high in calories. The type of thing you probably want to try to eat in moderation. Plus, they get a little complicated to make at home….and I would not want an Alfredo sauce to taste anything like coconut!!
*It may be one of the only things I wouldn’t want tasting like coconut*
So I searched on line for some ideas and through my searching I found a few different recipes that looked right up my alley. I sort of combined a few different recipes to create my own…and with some tweaks here and there, I came up with a vegan Alfredo Sauce that I think tastes pretty damn amazing. Creamy, salty, cheesy tasting goodness.
The nutritional yeast gives it that savory, cheesy, buttery flavor and the flour thickens it up nicely. The sauce should be the consistency of a real Alfredo sauce by the end- not too thick, not too thin…..juuuuust right!
Also- this recipe is one you have to taste as you go and adjust the seasoning because everyones taste is a bit different. I like this sauce to be salty and cheesy- like a classic Alfredo is, but if you are a bit sensitive to salt, ease it up a bit and then taste as you go and adjust accordingly.
And the best part- this is SOOO easy! There really isn’t a way to mess it up!
I serve it with my absolute favorite pasta- Red Lentil Pasta! Read about it here! It is so high in protein and tastes just like regular pasta. This sauce is amazing on top of it.
This recipe makes a pretty decent amount of sauce, I always have leftovers after tossing the pasta. I take a few big spoonfuls and toss the pasta in the sauce and any leftovers I have, I store in a mason jar n the fridge. Leftovers are good for more pasta, obviously, but I also like it on top of sauteed veggies or on top of grilled chicken. YUM!
Easy Vegan Alfredo Sauce
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon vegan butter (I use Earth Balance) or regular butter, but that will make this NOT vegan.
4 tablespoons flour (I use oat flour or regular white flour)
2 1/4 cups unsweetened plain almond milk
1 teaspoon sea salt (use less if you are very salt sensitive, starting with 1/2 teaspoon, and add more after tasting if needed)
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4-1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (omit if you don’t want it spicy!)
5 tablespoons nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons chopped, fresh parsley for garnish
Red Lentil Pasta- however much you want to make.
Cook pasta according to directions on package.
Heat a deep skillet on medium heat and add the olive oil and butter. Once the butter is melted and the oil is hot, add the garlic and stir well for about a minute or two until its lightly browned- be careful not to let it burn!
Next, add the flour and whisk into the oil and butter- it will look clumpy. Add the almond milk 1/2 cup at a time, whisking well to combine before adding the next 1/2 cup. It will look like a paste at first, then it will start to look more like a thick creamy sauce. Once all the almond milk is combined and whisked well, add the salt, pepper, nutritional yeast and red pepper flakes. Whisk well to combine and let it bubble on low/medium heat for about 5-6 minutes. This will let it reduce a bit- make sure to stir and scrape down the sides of the pan so the good stuff doesn’t get stuck to the sides!
Transfer the sauce to a blender and blend for 20 seconds until smooth. OR use a hand blender in the pan to smooth out the sauce- whichever you find easier! Then it is done and ready to toss into your pasta. Toss the red lentil pasta in a few hefty spoonfuls of the sauce, garnish with parsley an serve immediately.