It was such a delight to pull this creamy Alfredo recipe together. My spring cooking class was approaching and I was itching to create a recipe that would illustrate how easy it is to spin a notoriously unhealthy meal into a healthy plant-based version that is equally as tasty, if not more. It was a bold step choosing an Alfredo recipe, sans the cheese and heavy cream, but I knew I had it in the bag. I think you too will be delighted with this plant-based version of creamy dreamy Alfredo. I make a personal promise that the cheese and heavy cream that often leave you feeling bloated and heavy, will not be missed. In fact, this recipe will not only satisfy your taste buds and satiate your belly, it will also have you feeling light on your toes.
In the past, I’ve used cauliflower to make tasty cream sauces, but my intentions here were to raise the bar by perfecting both the flavour and the texture. While cauliflower can easily blend into something smooth and creamy on its own, the texture is still too light to pass for an Alfredo sauce. This is where I knew cashew cream would come in handy. With the right consistency, it would provide the perfect amount of creaminess similar to heavy cream. It was perfect! Smooth, creamy and super thick!
Look at this creamy delight! I love this recipe so much because while the Alfredo may look heavy, it’s actually light and delightful. You get the feel and taste of rich, creamy Alfredo without it weighing you down at all. There will be no guilt here when going for seconds.
Cauliflower and cashew cream, on their own, can taste rather bland. So I knew I was going to need additional ingredients to boost the flavor. I chose to add roasted garlic, leeks braised in white wine and nutritional yeast for an additional savory, cheesy flavor. It was a slam dunk in the taste test department. All of these flavors married beautifully together, especially the leeks and white wine. Similar to onion, but less pungent, leeks add a complexly beautiful undertone to many savory dishes. It was the beginning of spring and leeks were abundant, especially the long ones with the white part extending almost halfway to three quarters up the stalk. Since spring is almost over, it may be a little difficult to find leeks with mostly the white part showing on the stalk. However, I still urge you to try these sexy babies if you haven’t already. If by the sad chance you can’t find leeks, I think shallots or sweet onions would be a good replacement.
The process to making the creamy Alfredo is quite simple, actually. I used my VitaMix, however, a food processor can do the trick. Simply add all of the ingredients and blend until silky smooth.
Spring was the highlight for my cooking class so I wanted to use as many seasonal veggies as I could. In addition to spring peas and mushrooms (two must haves to include in creamy Alfredo, at least that’s what I think) I added in Asparagus, my second favorite spring veggie. However, since this recipe can be made any time of the year, add whatever favorite veggies are calling your name. It will still taste absolutely delightful.
I generally recommend only eating pasta as a treat, so when you do decide to indulge make sure it’s the best gluten-free pasta you can find. My absolute favorite is made from Jovial Foods — authentic, artisan crafted organic pasta from Tuscany. It’s absolutely the best pasta I’ve ever tasted, and I love everything about this company. From the farmers they choose to their understanding of the importance of farming in harmony with nature to them bottling tomatoes in glass to avoid BPA, everything about them is good and honest. I think you will love them too. Check them out here.
Note | While this particular brand is a traditional egg pasta, they also do provide gluten-free vegan pastas. Also, any pasta shape will work.
Roasted Garlic & White Wine Cauliflower Alfredo with Spring Vegetables
- 1 head cauliflower
- 1 head garlic
- 2 leeks, diced
- 1 C Cashews, soaked 30 minutes
- 1/2 – 3/4 C Filtered water
- 1.5 C dry white wine
- 3 T Nutritional Yeast
- Himalayan salt and pepper
- 1 (9oz) box Jovial Gluten-free Tagliatelle Pasta
- 2 C sweet peas
- 8 oz Crimini or Portobello mushrooms, sliced
- 1 bunch asparagus, chopped or any other veggies of choice
Roasting the Garlic
- Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400⁰F. Peal off several layers of the skin from the head of garlic, keeping a few layers to hold the head together. With a sharp knife, cut the top off the head of garlic exposing a bit of each clove of garlic.
- Place garlic head in a piece of parchment paper and drizzle EVOO on top. Seal the parchment paper with kitchen string.
- Place in a roasting dish and roast for 30 to 35 minutes, or until completely tender when poked with a fork or knife. Allow to cool slightly before squeezing out the garlic.
Making the Fettuccine Alfredo
- While the garlic is roasting you’re going to prepare the rest of the components.
- Cook pasta according to directions on the package, rinse and set aside.
- Drain & rinse the cashews. Add them to your Vita Mix or food processor with desired amount of water and blend until creamy. Set aside leaving the cashew cream in the container.
- Next, in a medium-sized skillet, sauté diced leeks with a generous amount of EVOO for 5-6 minutes over medium heat. Add white wine, turn down the heat and allow the leeks to braise for an additional 7-8 minutes or until much of the wine has reduced. Transfer leeks with remaining white wine to your Vita Mix or food processor with the cashew cream and set aside.
- Steam the cauliflower until fork tender and set aside.
- At some point, make sure to squeeze the roasted garlic from the skins and have them ready to go.
- Using the same skillet for the leeks, add mushrooms and more EVOO and sauté for 8-10 minutes, then add asparagus spears and sauté for additional 5 minutes. Add peas and stir well until they are heated through. Set aside.
- With your VitaMix or food processor ready to go with the cashew cream and leeks, add the steamed cauliflower, roasted garlic, Nutritional Yeast and salt & pepper to taste. Blend on high until creamy, scraping down the sides as needed.
- Add pasta to a large bowl and toss in the alfredo until well combined. Add veggies and toss to coat. Add more salt & pepper if you like.
- If the Alfredo sauce is too cool, you may reheat it in a pot before tossing it will the pasta.
- Also, if the pasta has cooled too much, simply rinse it with hot water for a minute.
- Serve immediately and enjoy.
So there you have it my friends, a mega delicious dairy-free Alfredo recipe that you’re going to want to sink your teeth into right away. Not only will you love it, but your friends, family, lovers, coworkers and anyone else you know that eats food will love it to! So make sure to add this recipe to your menu rotation, make it for date night, make it a must have for special occasions, or bring it to your next party. I promise, everyone will be super impressed with you!