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Vegan Alfredo Sauce

This vegan alfredo sauce is incredibly rich and creamy. It’s a cashew-based, dairy-free alfredo sauce with a deliciously savory, cheesy-like flavor. Whether you’re vegan or not, you’re gonna love it!

Vegan alfredo sauce in a glass jar next to a spoon.

The Best Vegan Alfredo Sauce Recipe

I’m so excited about this alfredo sauce recipe that I don’t even know where to start. It’s a vegan alfredo sauce. A dairy-free alfredo sauce. And a deliciously rich and creamy alfredo sauce that you’ll love even if you’re not vegan or dairy-free. Are you with me?

I’m not vegan or dairy-free (I’m what you’d consider dairy-light) but I love to create recipe options for those of you who are. Because as a gluten-free gal I know a thing or two about food restrictions and how exciting it can be to enjoy a classic recipe. Even if it is slightly modified.

If you’ve been following this blog for a while you’re familiar with my affinity for cashews and their amazing ability to morph into creamy, dreamy, dairy-like recipes. My homemade Cashew Milk, Vegan Caramel Cheesecake, Vegan Tzatziki and Cashew Date Shake are just a few examples.

Well, let me introduce you a new creamy, dreamy, cheesy recipe (though it has no cheese) – my Vegan Alfredo Sauce.

Vegan Alfredo Sauce Recipe Video

This sauce is extremely easy to make in a high-powered blender. Watch how I make it in the quick video below!

How to Make This Vegan Alfredo Sauce

There’s just three simple steps to make this recipe:

  1. Soak the cashews overnight. They form the base of this alfredo sauce.
  2. Add the drained cashews into a high-powered blender along with garlic, lemon juice, onion, nutritional yeast and some herbs.
  3. Blend everything together on high until creamy and voila – a super simple and amazingly delicious vegan alfredo sauce.

Vegan alfredo sauce ingredients in a blender.

Making vegan alfredo sauce.

Nutritional Yeast is the Secret Ingredient

The ingredient that gives this alfredo sauce that wonderfully cheesy flavor (without any cheese) is nutritional yeast.

If you’ve never cooked with nutritional yeast before, it’s small little flakes (about the size of large sea salt flakes) of deactivated yeast which provides a nutty, cheese-like flavor. Nutritional yeast is also a significant source of B Vitamins.

How to Use This Sauce

So what do you do with this sauce? I’d start with topping it on every spiralized veggie imaginable. In fact, to get you started I’ve whipped up a Parsnip Noodle Chicken Alfredo and Whole30 Chicken Broccoli Casserole which both use this sauce. If you’re vegan, just replace the chicken with snap peas, mushrooms or another vegetable. You can also top this alfredo sauce on roasted vegetables or potatoes. So good.

How to Store It

You can store this sauce in the fridge up to 5 days. You can also freeze it for up to two months. I recommend freezing it in a silicone ice cube tray, so you can easily thaw individual portions.

I should mention that this sauce does thicken up as it’s stored in the fridge and sometimes while you’re cooking with it. If that happens and you want a thinner sauce, just add more water.

Vegan alfredo sauce in a glass jar with spoon, and blender in the background.

More Vegan Sauces and Dips

Give these other vegan favorites a try!

Vegan alfredo sauce in a glass jar with a spoon.
4.96 from 133 votes

Best Vegan Alfredo Sauce

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 20 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan
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This vegan alfredo sauce is a cashew-based, dairy-free alfredo sauce with a deliciously savory, cheesy-like flavor. Add it to spiralized vegetable noodles, potatoes and many other dishes.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight, drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

Instructions

  • After the cashews have soaked overnight (or at least 6 hours), drain and rinse them.
  • Add the cashews and all other ingredients to a high-powered blend and blend until smooth.
  • Use immediately in a recipe or store in a sealed container in the fridge.

Lisa's Tips

  • The recipe makes approximately 1 cup of sauce. 

Nutrition

Calories: 223.5kcal, Carbohydrates: 16.5g, Protein: 10.5g, Fat: 14.5g, Saturated Fat: 2.5g, Sodium: 597.3mg, Fiber: 3.6g, Sugar: 3.3g
Course: sauce
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cashew Alfredo, Dairy free Alfredo Sauce, Vegan Alfredo Recipe, Vegan Alfredo Sauce
©Downshiftology. Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
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Recipe originally posted July 2017, but recently updated. 

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383 comments on “Vegan Alfredo Sauce”

  1. I have made this recipe so many times. We love it!! It is delicious on pasta as we all know. I have also used it for scalloped potatoes and spinach/artichoke dip. Thank you thank you, thank you!!

  2. Cashew don’t seem to sit well with me. What other nut can be used instead of cashews? 

  3. Made this today and it was awesome! Didn’t have rosemary so subbed with Herbs de Provence. Going to put the sauce on top of zoodles and grilled shrimp. Thanks for the great recipe!

  4. This was great. I can’t believe how much the nutritional yeast tastes like cheese. I would definitely put it on popcorn. I made it with penne pasta, tossed in some spinach and some spicy herbed chicken. Made extra and froze it. I can’t wait to share it with a co-worker who’s kid can’t have dairy.

  5. Amazing! 

    Truly flavorful! Just made this sauce to accompany a dish…. Spaghetti Squash with Broccoli Vegan Alfredo sauce.  I wasn’t too sure about the flavors at first, as I’m not yet a fully committed Vegan. But I was pleasantly surprised.  How long is the sauce good for in the fridge Lisa? I used Dr. Bragg’s Nutritional Yeast Seasoning.  Couldn’t find any other in the store. Mine came out to 2 1/2 cups. Did I blend too much? Used the same measurements in your recipe. Thank You! Haven’t had Alfredo Sauce un a long time because if it’s caloric content. Thankful for this recipe.! I love all your recipes! 

    • Hi Carla – I’m so happy you loved this recipe and gave it a try! You can store the sauce for about 4-5 days in the fridge. But you can freeze it for months, if you’d like to store it longer.

  6. Can you soak the cashews is Luke warm water for a Shorter time like 3 hours if you don’t have the 6 hour soaking time?? 

  7. Hi Lisa!
    Thank you for all your lovely, healthy recipes!! I am enjoying going through and trying different things. I’ve been eyeing this cashew sauce for a while now and really wanted to love it, but somehow it didn’t turn out for me :( It has cashew lumps in it…not creamy like yours. I don’t know what I did wrong. Please let me know if you have any suggestions? I would really like to figure it out so I can make it just as good as yours. I have a pretty good Ninja blender, so I don’t think that is the problem. I did, however, double the recipe and I could have gotten the ratio wrong somehow.

    • Hi Emily – I’m glad you love all my recipes! If this alfredo sauce had lumps in it, it sounds like the cashews weren’t soaked long enough (and make sure you used raw, not roasted cashews). Once the cashews are soaked properly they should be soft, to the point you can easily smush them between your fingers. If they are, you should end up with a super creamy sauce. And yes, double check your ratios if you doubled as well. Hope your next try turns out better! :)

  8. I was skeptical but willing to try it out… it is shockingly good! Cannot wait to use this in So many ways. 

  9. Hi there, I am VERY excited to try this recipe as I am always searching for dairy-free alternatives! I am wanting to make this a few days in advance, how long do you think it stays good in the fridge?

    Thanks and love your recipes!

  10. Do you think this would work in the food processor instead of a blender (ours is a little wimpy)?

  11. Yay, I’m happy you loved the recipe!

  12. Hi! Have been really enjoying perusing your site today and I just signed up for the weekly emails! :-) Quick question about the garlic in the recipe. What are your best suggestions for a replacement? I recently found out I have a garlic sensitivity, so I am removing garlic from my diet for a while to reset. Praying to be able to reintroduce it with no issues. Thanks!!

    • Hi Sheri – I’m glad you’re enjoying my website and recipes! You could try adding some garlic chives, to still get a hint of that flavor. And celery can add a nice touch of flavor as well. Hope that helps!

  13. Hi this looks great!
    Can I use purchased cashew butter here instead?

  14. This was easy and delicious. I had it with zoodles and my husband had it with real pasta. We both loved it. Thanks for the recipe!

  15. I’ve just discovered you and your blog, and am so excited! In January, I started a modified Keto way of eating and have lost 50 pounds so far. I’m hoping I can incorporate some of your fresh foods into my rotations! My question is, do you buy raw cashews in bulk from a whole foods type store?

  16. This really is the best Vegan Alfredo sauce our family has tried.

  17. Love, love this recipe Lisa! I am doing a dairy free regime at the moment because of digestive issues, and gluten free as well. This recipe fits the bill for me when I want something creamy. I use less garlic as I’m sensitive to too much. I am now a firm believer in using cashews! I make your cashew milk and cream as well. I tell you, my life changed when I bought a Vitamix! I know they are an expensive item but really, you can make everything, from soup to nuts, as the expression goes. I wish I had had this machine when I was rearing my daughter. It’s great for making baby food! X

    • Hi Shannon- Yes! Cashews are seriously a magic ingredient for all things creamy. And I’m so glad you’re enjoying your Vitamix as much as I am :)

  18. I am new to cooking with nuts so do you use raw or roasted cashews in this receipt .
    Thanks

  19. It looks really yummy!!  I’m not sure about the nutritional yeast as I heard it can be hard to digest if you’re not used to it..  Maybe I’d start with a 50/50 parmesan/yeast..  Also would it work if I already have cashew milk in the fridge?  I could take approximately 1 cup of cashew milk and add the garlic, yeast/parmesan, lemon juice and spices..  Would it be as good?  

    Thank you for all your great recipes!  You’re making me eat the healthiest I ever did! :)

  20. This is by far the very best Alfredo sauce I have ever tasted, hands down. It’s velvety texture, taste & the few wonderful, wholesome ingredients are a 10*+++! This sauce deserves an award!

  21. My son has a tree nut allergy. Do you have any suggested substitution for the cashews?  Thank you!!

  22. I’d love to make this recipe but I’m extremely allergic to cashews! ☹️ Is there an alternative nut you think would be a good replacement that won’t impact the taste or texture too much??

  23. Can it be frozen?

  24. Just made this. Surprisingly good, a very good imitation. I added a bit more salt as parmesean is quite salty also I pan tossed the noodles and sauce with a tbsp of vegan butter to creamy it up a bit. Overall very good, will make it again.

    • Glad you loved this vegan version of alfredo sauce! And yes, you can always add a bit more salt as needed :)

  25. This is such an easy, yummy recipe! Question – how do you recommend heating it up? I just used it cold over a few days. i wasn’t sure if heating it would ruin the flavours somehow. Also, have you tried it with sauteed onions?

    • Hi Nicole- You can just simply re-heat in the microwave, it won’t ruin the flavors. As for suateed onions, I haven’t but that sounds so delicious! I’ll have to try that sometime.

  26. Holy Toledo! This recipe rocks! I ended up sauteeing mushrooms in butter, and adding leftover broccoli to warm, before tossing in cooked linguine and pouring in the SAUCE FROM THE GODS. So delicious. Thank you for sharing :)

  27. This is my third-try with a Vegan Alfredo sauce recipe. Third time is a charm! I like how easy and fast it is to make. Also how it doesn’t use oil.

  28. I used organic raw cashews truffle salt and smoked Pepper for it and put an extra clove of garlic in it it was so delicious I couldn’t stop spooning it out of the blender and just eating it!😀👍

    • Wow! I love the addition of truffle salt and smoked pepper! I’ll definitely need to try that next time :)

  29. Such a big fan of this Cashew Alfredo sauce! 
    It was amazing, like the real deal! My husband who is extremely picky couldn’t tell the difference. New staple in our house hold! Thank you! 

  30. This vegan Alfredo sauce is amazing!! I was skeptical that it was not going to be flavorful enough, but it is soooo good. I’ve made it two days in a row and I put it on my Trader Joe’s vegan protein burger today, so good!!

  31. This recipe is absolutely amazing!!
    One of my favorite ways to use cashew nuts.
    The video was very helpfull too for me when making this recipe for the first time!

  32. This was amazing! So easy! I soaked the cashews in boiling water for an hour instead instead overnight and it worked great! Just boil the water, take off heat and add cashews then wait an hour! 

    • Hi Caroline- Good to know the boiling method worked out for you! I’ll keep that in mind for anyone who doesn’t want to wait to soak it :)

    • This sauce was perfect and so easy to make.
      I also boiled water and used the cashews about 2hrs later. The sauce was smooth as silk:).
      We were looking for a sauce to make “chicken” spinach alfredo pizza. It was delicious 😋. Can’t wait to try it with spaghetti squash or zoodles!
      Thank-You for the wonderful recipe.

      • Hi Diana- I’m so glad you found this sauce delicious and used it for a pizza dish! You’re gonna love it over zoodles as well :)

  33. SO DELICIOUS! Even my family (who would never choose to eat vegan foods) loved this sauce. It’s so easy to make. I make a double batch and pour it on everything: roasted veggies, chicken, fried tofu bites, potatoes (sweet and baby rainbow), pasta, rice–even on salad as as salad dressing.

    • Hi Beth- I’m so glad you and your family loved this sauce! It took quite a bit of testing, but I tried to make it taste as similar as possible to the real thing. And I love how you’re using it over so many dishes :)