I think you become an adult when you start making your own pasta sauce. Oh, and paying your own bills. That’s also important.
I don’t remember exactly this happened for me, but it was one of the best decisions I’ve made in the kitchen. I used to live on jarred pasta sauces (and vending machine food) in my college years, so I was elated and pleasantly surprised to learn how easy it is to make it from scratch.
This creamy white sauce is no exception.
This pasta was inspired by one of my favorite roasted veggies: Asparagus!
I love asparagus. It has the most amazing flavor when roasted, and is even delicious raw! Plus, it’s good for you. These little guys are packed with vitamin C, K, and folate, and are an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant-rich food. And don’t forget the fiber! Seriously people, eat your greens with every meal.
This pasta is simple, requiring just 9 ingredients and 30 minutes!
The sauce is adapted from my Creamy Vegan Garlic Pasta (which can be made gluten-free), and comes with an extra punch of flavor from fresh lemon juice. The lemon and roasted asparagus marry perfectly together in this dish to create a flavor combination I can’t get enough of.
You must make this dish! It’s
Loaded with veggies
& Perfect for a quick-but-healthy weeknight meal
The beautiful thing about this pasta? Leftovers are a dream. So be sure to make extra to pack for lunches during the week. If you’re anything like me, leftover pasta is a welcome mid-day treat when you don’t feel like cooking.
Enjoy this recipe! And if you do, take a picture and tag it #minimalistbaker on Instagram! I love seeing what readers are cooking up. Cheers!
Creamy Vegan Lemon Asparagus Pasta
- 1 bunch asparagus (trimmed and washed // ~12 ounces as original recipe is written)
- 1 pinch each sea salt + black pepper
- 2 medium lemons (sliced thinly)
- 3 1/2 Tbsp olive oil (divided)
- 3-4 large cloves garlic (minced)
- 10 ounces bow tie pasta (~5 cups as original recipe is written // see notes if GF*)
- 2 1/2 cups unsweetened plain almond milk*
- 3-4 Tbsp all-purpose flour (sub another thickener if GF*)
- 1-2 Tbsp nutritional yeast (optional // for a subtle cheesy flavor)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 C). Add asparagus to a baking sheet and toss with 1/2 Tbsp olive oil and a pinch each salt and pepper (amounts as original recipe is written // alter if adjusting batch size). Top with several thin slices of lemon and bake for 20-25 minutes. Once finished cooking, remove from oven and roughly chop into thirds.
- In the meantime, bring a pot of water to a boil and salt generously.
- While the water’s heating, bring a large skillet to medium heat. Once hot, add 3 Tbsp olive oil (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) and garlic. Whisk and continue cooking for 1-2 minutes or until garlic is just starting to brown.
- Add 3 Tbsp flour (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) and whisk. Cook for 30 seconds, then whisk in almond milk 1/2 cup at a time. TIP: Use a large flat spatula to smash down the bits of garlic and flour to properly incorporate. Add a healthy pinch salt and pepper and whisk. Slightly lower heat and continue cooking to thicken, stirring occasionally.
- Add pasta to boiling water and cook according to package instructions. Then drain and set aside.
- For extra creamy sauce, add sauce to a blender or use an immersion blender to blend. Add nutritional yeast and another pinch of salt and pepper. If it looks runny, add remaining flour (or cornstarch). Blend until creamy and smooth, using the “puree” or “liquify” setting if possible. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed, then add back to pan and continue cooking over medium to medium-low heat to thicken.
- Once your sauce has reached desired thickness, add the juice of half a lemon and stir.
- Add 3/4 of the chopped asparagus and the cooked pasta to the sauce and toss to coat.
- Divide between 2-3 serving plates (per original recipe // adjust if altering batch size) and top with remaining asparagus. Serve with a lemon wedge and vegan parmesan cheese.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to a few days.
*To keep this recipe gluten-free, use gluten-free pasta and sub the flour with cornstarch or another thickener of choice. Add 1-2 Tbsp during the blending process to make sure it’s completely blended. Then add back to the pan to thicken for 5-7 minutes. Alternatively, make a slurry with the cornstarch and a few Tbsp of the sauce in a small bowl and then whisk it directly into the pan during the simmering process. Repeat in 1/2 Tbsp amounts until desired consistency is reached.
*We recommend Trader Joe’s unsweetened, unflavored almond milk for best results.
*If not vegan, sub cow’s milk and parmesan cheese.
*Adapted from my Creamy Vegan Garlic Pasta with Roasted Tomatoes
*Inspired by Creme de la Crumb
*Asparagus health benefits from whfoods.org
*Nutrition information a rough estimate calculated with the lesser end of the range of garlic and flour.