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Pasta with Spinach Pesto

This is a perfect dish for a night when you are really limited on time. If you have kids this is also a great way to get them to eat spinach. My toddler gobbled this up. 

Ingredients for pasta:

1 bag of your choice of pasta. (I used a kamut flour penne here.)

Handful of mushrooms

red pepper flakes (optional)

Ingredients for Spinach Pesto:

4 cups of fresh spinach

1 garlic clove

1 tbsp of nutritional yeast

1/4 cup of pine nuts

1/2 cup of non-dairy milk

1/4 tsp of salt

Instructions:

1) Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and set aside.

2) Saute mushrooms on a skillet.

3) For the sauce, blend all the ingredients in a blender

4) Add pasta and sauce to the skillet with the mushrooms. Stir until heated through.

Pasta with Alfredo Sauce

I know what you'll think when you read the ingredients, cauliflower? Really? Back in my omni days I would have thought the same thing too. That must be so gross and mushy. But I swear it tastes great. Try it, just once. I bet you'll change your mind. 

Ingredients:

4 heaping cups cauliflower florets (1 small/medium cauliflower)

1 tablespoon minced garlic 

1/2 cup of non dairy milk of choice (also try using broth)

1/4 cup nutritional yeast

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon onion powder or 1 additional sautéed onion

1/4-1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or 1 additional fresh sautéed garlic

3/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, or to taste

1/4-1/2 teaspoon black pepper, to taste

Pasta of choice (I used one (7-oz) bag of Explore Asian Mung Bean pasta)

Choose your favorite toppings, I used pine nuts and fresh tomatoes (the choices are endless: sautéed mushrooms, zucchini, etc)

Instructions:

1) Place cauliflower florets in a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a low boil. Once boiling, cook for another 3-7 minutes until fork tender. Drain.

2) Meanwhile, broth sauté the minced garlic (and fresh onion if using it instead of onion powder) over low heat for 4-5 minutes until softened but not browned.

3) In a high speed blender, add the cauliflower, sauteed garlic, milk, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Blend until a super smooth sauce forms. 

4) Cook your pasta according to package instructions. Drain pasta.

5) Add cauliflower sauce into the pot (you can use the same pot) and add the drained pasta. Heat over low-medium until heated.

6) Plate and add your favorite toppings.

Creamy Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Love this creamy pasta dish! It's a simple meal that most kids will love. You can dress it up by adding cherry tomatoes, broccoli, mushrooms, or any of your other favorite veggies. 



INGREDIENTS
PASTA (whole wheat/ bean/ soba or another of your favorite)
2 red bell peppers
2 shallots, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Sea salt and ground black pepper
1.5 cups unsweetened almond milk
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1.5 Tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder (or other thickener of choice)
Pinch red pepper flake (optional, for heat)
12 ounces noodle of choice

FOR SERVING
• Vegan parmesan cheese
• Finely chopped fresh parsley or basil

For the Vegan Parmesan Cheese blend these ingredients in a blender:
3/4 cup raw cashews
3 Tbsp nutritional yeast
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp garlic powder

INSTRUCTIONS
1. Heat oven to 500 degrees F and roast red peppers on a baking sheet until charred - about 25-30 minutes. Cover in foil for 10 minutes to steam, then remove (peel away) charred skin, seeds and stems. Set aside.
2. Cook pasta according to package instructions; drain, cover with a towel and set aside.
3. While the red peppers are roasting, bring a large skillet over medium heat and sauté onion and garlic until golden brown and soft - about 4-5 minutes. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper and stir. Remove from heat and set aside.
4. Transfer sautéed shallot and garlic to blender with roasted peppers, almond milk, red pepper flake, nutritional yeast and cornstarch. Season with desired amount of salt, pepper and red pepper flake.
5. Blend until creamy and smooth, taste and adjust seasonings as needed, adding more salt and pepper or nutritional yeast for flavor.
6. Once blended, place sauce back in the skillet over medium heat to thicken. Once it reaches a simmer, reduce heat to low and continue simmering.
7. Once sauce is thickened to desired consistency, add noodles.
8. Serve with vegan parmesan, red pepper flake and fresh chopped parsley or basil.