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an overhead shot of the basil cashew Alfredo pasta in a bowl against a grey backdrop

Basil Pesto Cashew Alfredo Pasta

  • Author: Allison
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


If basil pesto and cashew Alfredo had a love child, this would be it! Made with cashews, lemon, nutritional yeast, garlic, and fresh basil, you will love this is a divinely creamy pasta sauce that tastes just like summer. Top the bowls with roasted vegetables, chickpeas, and my hemp cashew parmesan for a meal made in heaven. 



Roasted Chickpeas

  • 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas (or 1 14-oz can, drained and rinsed)
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp each fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Roasted Vegetables

  • 1/2 a medium red onion, sliced
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced into half moons
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • Pinch each fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes

Basil Cashew Cream Sauce

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked and drained
  • 2 packed cups fresh basil
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp pure maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup filtered water

For Serving

  • 4 cups dry pasta (I used fusilli, but you may use rotini or penne, or 4 portions of linguine or spaghetti)
  • Cashew Hemp Parmesan
  • Additional basil, chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place the chickpeas in a bowl and drizzle with the olive oil. Add the salt and pepper, toss to coat, and transfer to a baking sheet. Roast for 20-25 minutes, until lightly browned. The chickpeas will crisp up more as they cool.
  2. Place the sliced onion, zucchini, and garlic in a bowl. Add salt, pepper, and olive oil. Toss and transfer to a baking sheet. Roast for 25 minutes. Around the 18 minute mark, add the diced tomatoes and roast for seven more minutes. In this time, the tomato skins will burst slightly.
  3. Meanwhile, make the basil cashew cream sauce. Place the cashews, basil, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, garlic, salt, pepper, maple syrup, and water in an upright blender. Blend until smooth and transfer into an airtight jar until ready to serve.
  4. Make the cashew hemp parmesan using this recipe.
  5. Right before serving, pour desired amount of the sauce over the pasta. I ended up using all of it, because I like my pasta on the saucy side! Mix it in. Divide the pasta between bowls and top with the roasted vegetables, roasted chickpeas, cashew hemp parmesan, and basil. Pass hot sauce or chili flakes at the table for some spice.


Soak the cashews in boiling water for at least 45 minutes before making the sauce to soften them. Drain and proceed with the recipe.

  • Category: Dinner, Lunch
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean

Keywords: vegan basil pesto cream sauce, vegan basil cashew Alfredo, vegan summer vegetable pasta