One of most people's indulgent comfort foods is alfredo sauce. I admit, I used to love it too, but I didn't love how after just a few bites, I felt sick. There is such a thing as foods being too rich. Feeling nauseated and in a nasty food coma for hours after eating something isn't really worth it to me.
Enter the best Vegan Garlic Alfredo Sauce you'll ever have. No need to try any further anymore. This one is dairy-free and oil-free. Most vegan versions contain vegan butter or oil, not healthy. This one is made from cashews which make it exceptionally creamy. I wanted a whole food version, not made from oils and I did it all in just 7 ingredients (+salt). I've been making this for awhile and after a couple of folks asked for it on Facebook, I figured I better get it posted!
Read on to see how I came up with the similar rich, slightly sweet flavor of traditional garlic alfredo sauce......
Traditional garlic alfredo sauce has butter, milk, cream, parmesan cheese (or other cheeses) and garlic in it. Major dairy overload! Bloated, icky feeling. It also does not have onion in it. However, I wanted to give my alfredo sauce that slightly, sweet richness typically reached by cream and butter, so I added cooked onions, lots of them. But don't worry, it does not taste like onion sauce...it just gives it lots of flavor and cuts down on all the extra ingredients you typically see in vegan recipes.
I know what you are thinking....does it really taste like garlic alfredo sauce?? Well, my hubby said this exactly the first time he tried it, "spot on" and then he said "it really tastes exactly like garlic alfredo sauce". I was shocked. I thought it did, but I had taste tested it so much, I no longer trusted my taste buds. That's one reason I have people taste test my recipes. We all have different opinions though, so I'll let you be the judge. Try it and let me know! I'd say it is pretty darn close, especially considering it doesn't have any of the typical ingredients!
Regardless, it is delicious and very creamy and satisfying and will NOT make you sick and want to throw up afterwards. You can eat this alfredo sauce without tons of guilt.
I happen to be a huge lover of pasta. If you are too, then you have to try my Creamy Red Pepper Sauce with Fresh Basil. It's another winning pasta dish that is really popular with readers!
How exciting is it that you can make such delicious recipes that are just 8 ingredients?! If you are new to my blog and don't know how I came up with that concept, then read my About page to learn a little bit behind my passion.
If you are pressed for time, then you gotta try my 20 Minute Vegan Alfredo! It's actually my new favorite. So darn creamy and rich and easy! No chopping of veggies or anything! Allergic to nuts? Then make my Nut-Free Garlic Alfredo!
- 1 medium white onion, chopped (make sure to measure out 1½ cups (200 g) of chopped onion)
- 1-2 cups low sodium vegetable broth, separated (240-480 mL)
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼-1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 large garlic cloves, minced
- ½ heaping cup raw whole cashews (75 g, 2.6 oz) (soaked for overnight in hot water if you don't have a high powered blender)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (or more to your taste, I used a bit more, don't omit!)
- ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast (25 g, use less if preferred)
- It is not recommended to sub or eliminate any of these ingredients, as I cannot vouch for the results if any are changed. The lemon juice is crucial, as it eliminates any cashew flavor.
- Also, if you don't have a high powered blender like a Vitamix, it is crucial to pre-soak the cashews so they soften and the sauce ends up smooth and creamy, and not gritty. Drain them and rinse after soaking.
- Add the onion and ONLY 1 cup of the broth to a large pan over medium-low heat. Cook for about 8 minutes until the onion is very tender. (Add a tiny bit more broth if it is cooking too fast or turn the heat down, so the onions don't burn) After several minutes, add the garlic and cook a couple of minutes more. All of the broth should have evaporated by now. If not, keep letting it cook until the broth has evaporated. You don't want any more liquid once it's done cooking, so the end result is thick and creamy.
- Add the cooked veggies (the onion and garlic) to a blender. Start out by just adding ¾ cup more of the remaining broth and add the remaining ingredients (salt, pepper, cashews, lemon juice, nutritional yeast). Blend on high for a couple of minutes until very creamy and smooth. Add any more broth to reach desired consistency, if necessary. Taste and add any more salt & pepper, if desired.
- Serve over preferred pasta. Note: When preparing your pasta, make sure to salt your water well, so your pasta has flavor and isn't bland, which can affect the end flavor result of the dish. I add around a tablespoon to a large pot of boiling water. Garnish with parsley, lemon zest and salt & pepper, if desired. Add any veggies you like. I like to add roasted bell peppers and broccoli or even peas. Store leftovers in the fridge. The sauce will thicken up even more overnight, which you can thin out a little with a touch of broth when reheating, if necessary.
If you make this recipe, please do not repost it on your site, please link to me instead giving proper credit. I work very hard to create my recipes and share them for free, so please be respectful and link properly. If you are inspired by this recipe, again, please give proper credit and do not simply post it on your site.
Here's a little side by side nutrition for my alfredo sauce in comparison to Olive Garden's alfredo sauce....a little shocking:
Mine per 1/2 cup serving which is a hefty serving:
125.2 calories, 7 g fat, 5.6 g protein, 11.3 carbs
460 calories, 43 g fat!!, 9 carbs, 8 grams protein
Wow, what a difference! Hey, so it has a hair less carbs, but who cares when all of my ingredients are quality ingredients and not heavy on the heart. Nothing wrong with indulging occasionally, but you could eat my alfredo sauce weekly with much less guilt.
Hope you all love this Vegan Garlic Alfredo Sauce. In fact, make it and tag me in the photo on Instagram @thevegan 8 and please also use hashtag #thevegan8, so I can keep all my tag notifications in one place, otherwise I can miss the notifications. Thank you, it makes my day when you share!
After you've made this, then you gotta make my Garlic Alfedo Pizza with this amazing sauce!!