Since I’ve gone mostly gluten-free, we don’t eat pasta that much anymore. We usually have spaghetti squash or veggie noodles like zoodles, coodles and spoodles. LOL I’m talking about zucchini, carrot, and sweet potato noodles. You’ve probably heard of zoodles before and maybe coodles, but I don’t think spoodle is a word yet 😉 Well, if you haven’t tried it, you really should, cause it’s one of the most delicious things ever! *Which reminds me I should post a spoodles recipe soon!*
However, few weeks ago as I was cleaning up the pantry I found a box of spelt noodles and decided to put them to good use 😉 Spelt is very similar to wheat and both are high in gluten. But spelt is usually much better tolerated than wheat by those who are NOT celiac or gluten-intolerant. The problem with gluten is that it can lead to inflammation even in those who are not sensitive to it (1,2). Therefore, I try to avoid it as much as possible.
Some of my favorite gluten-free alternatives are Soba (Buckwheat) Noodles, Black Bean Spaghetti, Edamame Spaghetti, or gluten-free Ancient grain pasta, which is a mix of organic brown rice, quinoa, amaranth and corn. Just make sure you read the labels and avoid brands that have wheat flour or other additives.
I served this spaghetti with a rich, creamy and cheesy tomato sauce and whatever vegetables I could find in the fridge. In the photo above and the recipe below, I used onions, garlic, broccoli, cauliflower, and kale. I made it again yesterday with this gluten-free Ancient grain penne pasta and since I didn’t have cauliflower or kale, I used green onions and zucchini instead (photo below). So you can certainly change it up according to the ingredients you have available.
Hope you get to try and enjoy this dish as much as we did. And if you do try it, don’t forget to let me know what you think! Comment below or tag me on Instagram or Facebook @Nutriholist.
Veggie Pasta with Vegan Cheesy Tomato Sauce Recipe
- 4 cups gluten-free pasta or spaghetti
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 onion, sliced
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder, or 1-inch piece fresh turmeric, grated
- 2 garlic cloves, grated or crushed
- 1 cup cauliflower florets
- 2 cups of kale, chopped
- 1 small head of broccoli, cut into florets
- Pinch of unrefined sea salt and black pepper
- Handful of cashews for topping (optional)
Cheesy Tomato Sauce
- 1 cup cashews, soaked for a minimum of 2 hours or overnight*
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- 1 tomato
- 1 garlic clove or 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/4 cup full-fat coconut milk
- 1/4 cup water (more if needed)
- 1/2 teaspoon dried or 1 tablespoon fresh herbs such as oregano, basil or tarragon (optional)
- Unrefined sea salt and black pepper, to taste
- COOK PASTA: Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the pasta or spaghetti and cook al dente according to package instructions. When ready to drain, reserve 1 cup of cooking water for later
- PREPARE VEGGIES: Meanwhile, heat coconut oil in a pan over medium heat and add the onions. Cover the pan and let the onions cook until soft and translucent for about 5 minutes
- Add turmeric and garlic, stir for 1-2 minutes, then add the cauliflower, kale, sea salt and black pepper. Cover and let it cook for about 10 minutes until vegetables are soft
- Add the broccoli, stir and cook for 2-3 more minutes. You don’t want the broccoli to cook for too long since it loses its bright green color and gets brown and mushy. Remove from heat and set aside
- MAKE TOMATO SAUCE: Drain cashews and add them to a food processor or high-power blender (works better as it produces a smoother sauce) with the rest of the ingredients. Blend until smooth and add more water if necessary
- ASSEMBLE: Transfer the drained pasta/noodles back into the pot. Add in the veggies, cheesy tomato sauce and the cup of reserved water from boiling the pasta. Mix well together until everything is coated in plenty of sauce. Top with a handful of cashews and enjoy!
*If you forgot to soak the cashews beforehand, you could pour hot water on top and let them sit for 15 minutes minimum while you prepare the meal