This creamy vegan pumpkin pasta is an easy vegan recipe that is perfect comfort food for fall.
The pumpkin sauce is made with canned pumpkin puree and coconut or other plant based milk. The vegan pumpkin pasta sauce is a creamy savory blend that won't leave you missing the dairy.
Tis' the season for pumpkin everything. I like pumpkin year round, but admit I really do get into the spirit this time of year. I'm particularly fond of savory pumpkin dishes like this creamy Vegan Pumpkin Pasta, that I'm sharing with you right now. No I don't happen to be vegan, though I don't eat a whole lot of meat. I just like to be inclusive when I can, and honestly just sort of realized that in making it dairy-free, the recipe ended out being vegan.
My goal was a rich hearty dish, not sweet, but more like a savory pumpkin pie outfitted like a dairy-free alfredo. I also wanted to keep it simple and fast, so you... my dear readers, will actually try making it & not just pin it.
So, how did we get a hearty vegan pumpkin pasta sauce without cream... or cheese. Easy, unsweetened Coconut Milk provided the "creamy" and almond meal stood in for the thickening ability of Parmesan Cheese. The pumpkin purée has some richness to it, so the egg yolk I often add to an Alfredo was not missed. The results are far healthier and both vegan and meat eaters will enjoy (My fussy daughter even ate some).
Best Dairy Free Milk to Use in the Sauce
While I used coconut milk in this recipe, any extra creamy non-dairy milk would work well. Some almond milk brands are rich enough. Soy milk is generally thicker and a great choice when you need a nut-free milk.
A little vegan butter or vegan cheese can add body and flavor if your milk is thinner in consistency.
Yes, simply swap your favorite gluten free pasta, such as brown rice pasta or lentil pasta in for the standard pasta. The other ingredients should already be free of gluten.
Leftover sauce should be promptly sealed in an airtight container once it has cooled. It will last in the fridge for 3-4 days or freezer for up to 3 months.
Leftover pasta should also be sealed and will last a couple days, but tends to dry out quickly as the sauce absorbs into it. It is best to just mix the sauce and pasta you will actually eat.
Creamy Vegan Pumpkin Pasta Recipe
- ½ pound dry pasta cooked
- ½ tablespoon olive oil
- ⅔ cup diced sweet onion
- ½ teaspoon fresh thyme leaves de-stemmed
- ½ cup water
- 2 teaspoon mild miso paste or vegetable broth base
- ½ cup pumpkin puree
- ½ cup unsweetened Coconut Milk canned coconut milk or other rich and creamy plant based milk alternative
- 2 tablespoon almond meal flour ground pine nuts, ground pumpkin seeds or vegan Parmesan cheese are other options (nutritional yeast or bread crumbs can also be used if you are OK with that)
- dash of nutmeg
- Kosher salt to taste
- Boil pasta according to package directions, but make sure to drain it while still slightly firm, as you want al dente pasta. Cook either immediately prior to making the pumpkin sauce or while preparing sauce.
- Heat oil in skillet over med-high heat. Once hot add the onion, and reduce to medium. Saute until lightly golden and soft. Add the thyme, cook another minute.
- Add water, then mix in miso until dissolved.
- Add the pumpkin, coconut milk and almond meal. Stir and reduce heat to low. Simmer for about 3 minutes, then add nutmeg, stir and simmer about 2 more minutes. Shut off burner, add salt to taste, then mix in the cooked pasta & serve.
- Make the sauce spicy with a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper.
- Add a ½ teaspoon of smoked paprika to the sauce for a smoky flavor that gives a richer "meatier" taste to the pasta dish.
- Toss in a fresh sage or bay leaf or two into the simmering sauce. Either will add depth to the sauce. Simply remove before serving.