Creamy Vegan Vodka Pasta

We love a classic marinara sauce but sometimes crave something a little more special for pasta night! That’s where this dairy free vegan vodka sauce comes in – or penne alla vodka as many call it. I think it’s the best vegan vodka sauce I’ve ever had!

Typically vodka sauce is made with dairy, but this recipe is dairy free! I’ve swapped heavy cream for cashew cream for an equally luscious / creamy sauce that perfectly coats each and every noodle.

It is creamy, luscious, slightly peppery, herbaceous, and sometimes spicy. As the base of the sauce simmers the tomatoes and onions caramelize and turn sweet and jammy. The vodka offsets the sweetness and adds a slightly peppery finish. Long story short – it’s DELICIOUS!

– Raw cashews – Onion and garlic – Vodka – Diced tomatoes and tomato paste – Dried spices – Lemon juice – Nutritional yeast – Gluten free pasta – Fresh basil


Add cashews to a heat proof bowl and cover with just boiled water to soak.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until onions are quite soft and translucent.

Add the vodka, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic powder, onion powder, and chili flakes to the skillet. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook on low until the vodka has burned off and the sauce has reduced.

Drain the soaked cashews and add to a high speed blender with all of the simmered tomato base, nutritional yeast, salt, lemon juice, and reserved pasta water. Blend on high, until absolutely smooth and creamy.

Add the sauce back to the skillet along with the cooked pasta. Toss together and warm on low heat, stirring occasionally until the sauce evenly coats the pasta. Season to taste with salt and thin the sauce with a little more pasta water if desired.

Serve topped with fresh basil and chili flakes.