Vegan Lemon Sauce with Basil and Pasta

Make this amazing and easy 7 ingredient Vegan Lemon Cream Sauce with Fresh Basil and Pasta in about 30 minutes! Dairy-free, oil-free and gluten-free!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 2 cups sauce and 8 oz pasta


  • 1/2 packed cup 80g finely chopped yellow onion
  • 4 large cloves garlic minced (15g)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 13.5 oz can "lite" coconut milk See Note
  • 3 tablespoons 45g fresh lemon juice (this imparts a strong lemon flavor, use less if preferred)
  • 1/2 teaspoon 3g fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews or use 1/2 cup mashed cooked/peeled gold potato for nut-free, SEE DIRECTIONS
  • 8 cups water for pasta plus salt
  • 8 oz pasta of choice I used Explore Cuisine Edamame Pasta
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

Note: This is meant to be a thin sauce so that it can really soak up the pasta. HOWEVER, if you want it thicker after blending, use the extra 1/4 cup cashews. I would be careful about adding too much extra potato though, if doing that version, as it can get glue-y when blending. Since I love rich and creamy, I preferred the cashew version. Although, the potato version was still delicious. If you do the potato version, it will have more of a potato soup texture, but still good.

Note 2: I recommend the lite canned coconut milk for best results. It imparts no coconut flavor and is the richest/creamiest of plant milks. Do not use light milks like almond, oat, rice, etc. or you will end up with a bland thin sauce. You could try cashew or possibly soy, but you will likely need extra cashews and I have NOT tested these so I cannot vouch for the results!


  1. If using the cashew version, soak your cashews overnight if you don't have a high-powered blender. Otherwise, you don't need to soak them.
  2. To a large pan, add the onions, garlic and the 1/2 cup water and cook over medium heat for 8 minutes until tender and all the water has evaporated.
  3. While the onions are cooking, boil your water for your pasta. Make sure to salt your water well or your pasta will taste very bland and make you whole dish taste bland and nasty. If making the Explore Cuisine Edamame pasta, please note the directions on the box, as the pasta cooks in 3-5 minutes, unlike regular pasta.
  4. Add the milk, salt, pepper and lemon juice and heat through for just a minute.
  5. Add the sauce mixture to a blender with the cashews or potato and blend just until smooth. If using the potato, blend JUST enough until mixed. Blending potatoes too long can make them glue-ish. If you want it thicker, add more cashews OR briefly heat it back over the stove to thicken it more. The cashews will help to thicken the sauce over the stove, whisk until it thickens to desired consistency.
  6. Add the pasta to serving bowls and drizzle a good amount of sauce on them. Top with lots of fresh basil and extra pepper and lemon juice if desired. The basil really balances out the tartness from the lemon.