This Vegan Lemon Ricotta Pasta is creamy, cozy, and made with only 9 wholesome ingredients! A perfect one-pot entree for busy weeknights or date night.
- 8–12 ounces (225–340 g) gluten-free or regular pasta of choice*
- 7 ounces (200 g) extra firm-tofu, roughly torn into chunks
- 1/2 cup (75 g) raw cashews, soaked in water overnight*
- 2 cloves of garlic (or 1 tsp garlic powder for a milder flavor)
- Juice and zest of 1 large lemon, divided (I used a Meyer lemon)
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon mellow white miso paste (optional, but recommended)
- 2 teaspoons arrowroot powder or cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
- Optional toppings: chili flakes, fresh herbs, and/or black pepper
- Cook the Pasta: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Once boiling, cook the pasta to al dente, according to the package instructions. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water and drain the pasta, but do not rinse.
- Make the Ricotta: In the meantime, add the tofu, cashews, garlic, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, miso paste, and salt to a food processor. Process until smooth and creamy – about 60 seconds – to form the dairy-free ricotta.
- Make the Sauce: Once you have drained the pasta, return the pot to the stove over medium-low heat. Add 3/4 cup of the reserved pasta water to the pot along with the arrowroot powder; quickly and rapidly whisk the powder into the sauce until no clumps remain. Then, add the ricotta and mix until evenly incorporated; if the sauce is too thick for your liking, add the additional 1/4 cup of pasta water. Simmer for 3-5 minutes, until slightly thickened.
- Serve: Add the lemon zest to the pot and mix into the sauce, then add the pasta and fold into the sauce. Add more salt to taste, if necessary. Mix until all of the pasta is evenly coated, then divide onto serving plates and top as desired. Serve warm; leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days, but the sauce will thicken once refrigerated.
- Pasta: If you prefer your pasta to be well-sauced, I recommend using 8 ounces of pasta; if you prefer a thinner sauce, use 12 ounces to spread it out a little more.
- Cashews: It’s best to soak the cashews overnight, otherwise they won’t blend as well in the food processor. If you forget you can either soak the cashews in boiling water for 1 hour or place the cashews in water and microwave for 2 minutes, then let sit for 1 hour. Depending on your food processor the final sauce may not be as creamy.