Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Sundried Tomato Alfredo Sauce Recipe (Gluten Free, Soy Free, Vegan)


I have to admit even 4 months into a mostly vegan diet, I REALLY miss cheese.

I went casein free last January because my nose and sinuses completely stop up whenever I eat or drink any type of dairy. I also wanted to change my eating habits and become more healthy in my diet. So it worked well transitioning to a vegan lifestyle. Yet, despite not eating cheese on a regular basis in the past year, I still miss it a lot. And there are times when it accidentally sneaks onto my plate.

I've learned how to make several cheddar-tasting "cheese" sauces that are vegan in the past year, but sometimes I just want a very light tasting sauce for a quick pasta meal.

Earlier this week I made a very simple white sauce and added fresh herbs and spices. I wanted an easy pasta dish like macaroni and cheese, but with a more adult twist.

gluten free macaroni

I also decided to use a combination of a homemade cashew milk and hemp milk to create the base of the sauce. I love using raw cashews in vegan sauces because they tend to create a velvety smooth and creamy texture. Perfect for a sauce to accompany brown rice pasta.

I also decided to use simple brown rice flour as my thickening agent to create the white sauce. In doing so, I felt like the sauce had more of a traditional "mac and cheese" texture. I don't know why exactly, but it created a more smooth-tasting sauce than the cornstarch I've used in the past for thickening.

To add a bold punch of flavor at the end of the sauce, I threw in about 1/4 cup of diced sundried tomatoes. It was perfect. A smooth, creamy sauce with a hint of garlic & lemon, followed by the sweet-tart taste that only sundried tomatoes can lend.

My husband had 2 servings of this lovely sauce ladled over brown rice pasta and smiled as he ate. I'll take that as a sign this is one delicious vegan "cheese" sauce.


hemp milk

Sundried Tomato Alfredo Sauce

(Gluten Free, Soy Free, Vegan)
Created by Carrie @ www.gingerlemongirl.com

Alfredo Sauce:
1 1/2 cups Hemp Milk (or other unsweetened non-dairy milk)
1 cup water
2/3 cup raw cashews
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 clove garlic, finely minced (or 1 teaspoon garlic granules)
1-2 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg
2 tablespoons olive oil

Roux Ingredients:
1/4 cup brown rice flour
2 tablespoons olive oil

Add In:
1/2 cup roughly chopped sun-dried tomatoes

Optional Ingredients:
1-2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

In a large blender add first all Alfredo sauce ingredients. Pulse on high speed (or liquefy) until mixture is very smooth and creamy. Set aside. In a large saucepan heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Whisk in brown rice flour and cook for 1-2 minutes, whisking consistently. Turn down to medium heat and slowly whisk in Alfredo sauce. Heat, stirring/whisking constantly for 5-8 minutes until mixture becomes thick and smooth. If mixture becomes too thick, add water a tablespoon at a time until sauce is the consistency you desire. Stir in chopped sun-dried tomatoes. Serve hot immediately over freshly cooked pasta, brown rice, potatoes, broccoli, asparagus, etc...

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  1. I'm so impressed by all the healthful changes you're making. And it's great to know your husband enjoys a lot of the meals, too. That's encouraging for all of us!

  2. This looks great! And I understand...I've been trying to go dairy free to see if it will help with post nasal drip, and the longest I've managed is 4 days! I really love cheese! I'm going to try again though, once I finish the yogurt in my fridge...

  3. I too would miss cheese if I was dairy-free! I went dairy-free for a few weeks at one point to determine whether it was causing me any lingering issues since going gluten-free...thankfully it wasn't, but I can empathize. This does sound delicious. I love hemp milk - it's so creamy! This has to be much healthier than a typical alfredo sauce, whether you're required to be dairy-free or not! Might just have to sneak this one on the hubby's plate and see if he notices!

  4. Mmm, Carrie, this looks beyond delicious! I love the flavours and everything =D.

  5. I just wanted to say thank you for this amazing blog! I just started a gluten free lifestyle. I was previously a vegetarian and the lack of options (*i thought*) actually caused me to start eating a little meat. I plan on using your recipes! Thanks again!

  6. This looks great Carrie! I make something similar - try adding some roasted red peppers to the mixture (they get blended into the mixture) - it adds a nice flavor and color to the sauce.


  7. I am sure you do miss cheese. Have you tried nutritional yeast? (I'm sure you have...) I used it in a cauliflower risotto and it actually tasted like Parmesan cheese.

  8. Yum. I empathize. I know I need to give up dairy and while I do go for some periods of time without it, I haven't given it up yet. Cheese is a big factor, so coming up with alternatives is great. I wanted to mention that Ali (Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen) had made a baked zucchini dish with almond flour and olive oil a while back and it did have a really good Parmesan cheese-type flavor. I ended up using the same concept in a potato dish and enjoying it very much.


  9. Thank you so much for this recipe! I had great luck with it. I made a few adjustments (using almond milk instead of hemp, chicken broth instead of water, sweet brown rice flour instead of regular brown rice flour, and added about 1/4 cup of nutritional yeast for more zing) and it was fabulous!!! I love something that can be made quickly with pantry staples. I'll be making this again for sure. Cheers! Kimberly