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Vegan Cauliflower Alfredo Pasta (Calfredo!)

Author : Ashley Madden
Total Time: 30 mins
Servings: 4 Serving
Course: Pasta
Cuisine: Italian
5 from 1 vote
I've been sitting on this cauliflower alfredo recipes for years. I've made it 100 times and each time I've tweaked it a little, trying to achieve that perfect version.


Alfredo Sauce

  • 2 heaping cups roughly chopped cauliflower florets
  • ½ cup diced yellow onion
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • ¼ cup raw cashews soaked in warm water for 1 to 2 hours
  • 1 cup unsweetened soy milk unsweetened almond milk works too
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium tamari
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice ~ juice of ½ a lemon
  • teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon Himalayan salt
  • fresh cracked black pepper


  • 10 to 12 ounces brown rice or quinoa pasta spaghetti, fettuccini, penne
  • 10 ounces cremini or button mushrooms quartered
  • 2 cups packed baby spinach or chopped kale
  • cups cooked or canned chickpeas or white beans drained and rinsed


  • Place the cauliflower in a steamer basket and steam the cauliflower until tender. How-to on steaming here. This will take about 7-10 minutes. Once tender, set aside.
  • Meanwhile in a large sauté pan, sauté the onions, garlic and thyme with a few tablespoons of water until the onions are translucent (about 5 to 7 minutes). Continue to add water as needed to prevent burning. Once cooked, transfer the onion and garlic to a blender. Keep the pan nearby as you will use again to sauté the mushrooms.
  • Drain the cashews, discard the soaking liquid, and add them to the blender along with the steamed cauliflower and remaining sauce ingredients (milk through pepper). Blend on high until smooth. Set the sauce aside.
  • Add the mushrooms to the same pan used to sauté onions and garlic. Add a few tablespoons of water, black pepper and a pinch of salt and cook on medium heat for 5 to 7 minutes until the mushrooms shrink in size and release their juices.
  • Add the alfredo sauce to the pan of mushrooms and warm on low heat.
  • Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to directions until pasta is al dente.
  • In the last 30 seconds of cooking the pasta, add the spinach and beans to the pot. Turn the heat off and drain the pasta/chickpea/spinach mix. Rinse with water and drain very well and then return the pasta to the pot.
  • Immediately add the alfredo sauce and mushrooms to the pasta (you can adjust how creamy the pasta is by adding more or less sauce). Toss the mix with tongs until well combined. Garnish with almond parmesan and chopped parsley or basil and serve.


  • I like to make this sauce ahead of time and reheat as needed.
  • Use whatever pasta you love – quinoa, chickpea, whole wheat!
  • This pasta is best served immediately.
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