I am often in the mood for a creamy comforting pasta (and so is my boyfriend), and this 10-Ingredient Creamy Vegan Pantry Pasta is the easiest option that actually tastes amazing. It’s made with just pantry ingredients, is quick and simple to make, and is packed with flavor. It’s also easy to customize, so you can round it out with your favorite vegetable or protein.
This recipe is straightforward, but if you want a few cooking tips (including the proper way to dice an onion and peel garlic) or want to see me cooking in action, I’ve included the video down below.
Why you’re going to like this creamy vegan pantry pasta
10 main ingredients. Okay, not counting water, oil, salt and pepper. But yeah, just 10 main ingredients, woohoo!
Pantry staples. And all those ingredients are pantry staples (i.e., you might already have all the required ingredients in your pantry).
Budget-friendly. In addition to being a pantry meal, it’s budget-friendly!
Weeknight-friendly. It takes 30 minutes to make, from start to finish, including all the prep time.
Comfort food heaven. It’s creamy, cheesy, and smoky, and incredibly indulgent. It tastes like a slightly smoky version of fettuccine Alfredo! It was inspired by my Creamy Mushroom Stroganoff, which is one of my most popular recipes, so you know it’s good!
Easy to customize. Feel free to make this your own meal. Toss in frozen peas at the end, pair with a side of roasted broccoli, bulk up with some beans or tofu or your favorite protein source.
Substitutions for this recipe
In the event you don’t have all the exact ingredients on hand, here are some substitutions to try.
No onions? Shallots work wonderfully. So do leeks, though I imagine you’re more likely to have onions on hands than leeks.
Intolerant or allergic to soy? Try substituting the tamari or soy sauce with Bragg liquid aminos.
Gluten-free? Use gluten-free soy sauce (aka tamari), use gluten-free flour or cornstarch, and use gluten-free pasta.
Plant milk. Canned lite coconut milk is the most pantry-friendly recipe, but I’ve been using oat milk in this recipe since I have a lot on hand. Any creamy plant-based milk such as oat, coconut, cashew, or soy will work – just make sure it’s unsweetened.
No tahini? The tahini adds extra richness and creaminess, so you can omit it, though at least one reader subbed almond butter with delicious results.
No smoked paprika? The smoked paprika gives this recipe the smoky taste. You can use regular paprika if you have it, it just wont’ taste smoky.
No Dijon or coarse-grain mustard? Add a splash of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. The acidity at the end helps balance the creamy richness.
If you give this recipe a try, be sure to tag me on Instagram with your recreations and please comment with your feedback below!
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 3/4 cup (180 mL) vegetable broth or water
- 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium tamari (gluten-free soy sauce) or soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour*
- 3/4 cup (180 mL) canned “lite” coconut milk or unsweetened oat milk**
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt + more to taste
- Freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard or coarse-grain mustard
- 6 ounces (170g) linguine, fettuccine, or any pasta of choice (including gluten-free)
- Optional garnishes: chopped flat-leaf parsley, toasted pine nuts or Cashew Parmesan
- Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until al dente.
- Meanwhile, heat a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat and add the olive oil. Once the oil is shimmering, add the onions and season with a pinch of kosher salt. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until browned around the edges. Add the garlic and thyme, and stir to combine for 1 minute, until fragrant.
- While the onions are cooking, pour the vegetable broth (or water) into a measuring cup or bowl and add in the tamari or soy sauce and flour. Whisk to combine until all the flour is dissolved.
- Pour the vegetable broth-flour mixture into the onion-garlic mixture and whisk to combine, ensuring there are no flour clumps. It should thicken almost immediately. Reduce the heat to medium-low and pour in the coconut milk or oat milk, tahini, nutritional yeast, paprika, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and black pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5-10 minutes, or until the sauce is thickened and very creamy, whisking occasionally.1. NOTE: if you double the recipe, you’ll probably want to cook it closer to 10 minutes.
- Stir in the Dijon mustard, and taste for seasonings, adding more salt as needed. Add the hot cooked pasta directly into the sauce and toss to coat until all the pasta is coated.