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A to Z Yoga > Health  > The Best Vegan Pesto Pasta

The Best Vegan Pesto Pasta

When I decided to go vegan in January of 2018 my biggest panic was how will I live without my homemade pesto chicken and mushroom pasta?? Then guess what I realised? I could make a vegan pesto with all sorts of veggies in that would turn out to be even more yummy than the non-vegan kind!

It's the best pesto I've ever had, vegan or not!
Before being vegan my friends and family would request for me to make my pesto pasta dishes because my pesto was apparently the besto (all friends fans will understand that reference) so, when I started searching and trying different recipes I knew I had to make something that would be just as good.
I looked and tried quite a few recipes, but most were simply basil, pine nuts, garlic and oil which is all good but what made the non-vegan pesto so good was the cheese and the fact I used to add spinach to it as well. I started thinking of what I know tastes yummy and cheesy in the vegan world and then thought of two things…
The Secret Ingredients
Nutritional Yeast and cashew nut butter! who knows why cashews have a cheesy flavour but they just do. They’re often used as a cheese substitute, as is nutritional yeast.
What’s Nutritional Yeast?
I asked this once on some vegan food post and never got an answer. I didn’t care then because I wasn’t vegan, but now I do and I wanted to know what it is.
It’s quite a funny answer really… the answer is in the title! It is a flaky substance that is made up of all sorts of nutritional stuff including vitamin B12 (a very important one for vegans) and it has quite a nutty, cheesy flavour to it. It’s great in all sorts of recipes and even sprinkled on top of salads.
Cashew Nut Butter
You can of course buy cashew nut butter in most health food shops but they’re expensive and it’s so easy to make I wouldn’t bother. You just need a good blender and a bag of cashew nuts. Put the nuts in the blender and wait until they turn into butter! it really is that simple. you’ll think nothing is happening for a while, they will just start by turning into a flour consistency and then all of a sudden it bunches together and turns into butter. It takes about 5 minutes.
My Pesto
This is possibly the easiest thing to put together ever but you will need a good blender if you want to be able to make it quick and easy! According to my husband “it’s the best pesto I’ve ever had, vegan or not!”
The ingredients
50g Basil
25g Parsley
50g cashew nuts
2 tbsp cashew butter (go to cashew nut butter above)
1 large clove of garlic or 2 medium
3 heaped dessert spoons of nutritional yeast
a few really good glugs of extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
de stem the basil and parsley and wash them.
Now put everything in the blender…and add as much oil as you need to make a loose but not too wet consistency.

 

blend away…
 until it looks like this…
add it to pasta, sandwiches or the recipe below. It should give you enough for about 6 meals and last in the fridge for about a week.

Vegan Pesto

The ingredients
50g Basil
25g Parsley
50g cashew nuts
2 tbsp cashew butter (go to cashew nut butter above)
1 large clove of garlic or 2 medium
3 heaped dessert spoons of nutritional yeast
a few really good glugs of extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Method
de stem the basil and parsley and wash them.
Now put everything in the blender…and add as much oil as you need to make a loose but not too wet consistency.
blend away…
add it to pasta, sandwiches or the recipe below. It should give you enough for about 6 meals and last in the fridge for about a week.

Tricolore Pesto pasta

 

serves two
takes about 10/15 minutes
Ingredients
250g brown rice pasta
2/3 tablespoons of the pesto – recipe above
1 1/2 cups spinach
1/2 cup tomatoes (any kind)
1/4 cup red peppers
Method
Put on the pasta. While it cooks chop the tomatoes and peppers and prepare the spinach.
If you haven’t made your pesto yet, make it now.
Once the pesto is done, fry the tomatoes and peppers until they go soft and slightly brown. then add the spinach until it wilts.
Once the pasta is done, drain it and then add the vegetables to it. Add in the pesto, stir it all together and serve.
If you would like more vegan inspiration you won't want to miss my YouTube challenge; 30 days to SHINE! starting 1st July, subscribe and sign up to my mailing list for the vegan recipes, Yoga videos and HIIT sessions.

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