Hearty, creamy vegan chorizo pasta is so delicious and easy to make! It's packed with veggies, protein, and FLAVOR.
The chorizo comes together in the food processor, and then you do a quick sauté to brown it. For the cashew cream, you just toss everything into the blender and blend until smooth and creamy.
Toss it together with some bite-sized pasta and veggies, and supper is served!
Ingredients and substitutions
- cashews - For the cashew cream sauce. Use raw or roasted cashews, salted or unsalted. Soaking will soften them and dissolve away most of the salt, so you have options here!
- lemon juice - Gives the cashew cream a little zesty tang.
- garlic - To season the chorizo.
- onion - Use red or sweet onion for the chorizo. Gives it so much umami flavor!
- walnuts - Adds great texture to the vegan chorizo!
- cooked chickpeas - Use canned or homemade, as long as you have about 1 ½ cups worth.
- dried spices - You're seasoning the chorizo with chili powder, cumin, chipotle chili powder, coriander, oregano, and just a pinch each of cinnamon and cloves.
- red wine vinegar - Adds acidity and flavor to the chorizo.
- olive oil - To sauté the chorizo.
- pasta - Choose the bite-sized pasta of your choice!
- frozen corn and frozen spinach - Thaw and drain these frozen veggies before tossing with the chorizo pasta ingredients.
- fresh tomato - Adds umami and a lovely freshness that contrasts with all of the strong, rich flavors in this dish.
How to make vegan chorizo pasta
Start soaking your cashews and cooking the pasta while you make the chorizo. When the pasta finishes cooking, transfer it to a large mixing bow.
Next, make the chorizo.
Combine the onion, walnuts, and garlic in your food processor and pulse a few times to break them up. Then, add all of the remaining chorizo ingredients, except the olive oil, and pulse until you have an even mixture.
In a skillet, heat the oil over medium high. Add the contents of the food processor, and cook for five to 10 minutes, until the mixture begins to brown and turns fragrant.
Now, make the cream sauce while the chorizo cooks.
Combine all of the cashew cream ingredients in your blender, and puree until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Then, assemble the vegan chorizo pasta.
In a serving bowl, toss together the cooked pasta, chorizo, cashew cream, tomato, and the warm, thawed veggies. Serve immediately. I like to top this with a sprinkle of my seasoned vegan parmesan "fairy dust"!
- Overlapping steps is the key to making this dish quickly. While the cashews soak and the pasta cooks, make the chorizo in the food processor. Then, while the chorizo is in the pan, blend up the cashew cream and thaw the frozen veggies. That way, everything will be ready at the same time.
- For the chorizo, you don't want to make a dough. You want a sort of crumbly texture, so don't overprocess!
- When cooking the chorizo, I like to spread it out in the pan and leave it to brown for a minute or two, then flip and use my spoon to break it up, and repeat that process until it's browned to preference.
- Make sure that your cashew cream is completely smooth. That might mean more blending than you think. Just stop occasionally and give your blender's motor a rest, if you have to blend for a long time.
Leftovers will keep for three to five days in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Warm in the microwave or in a skillet on the stovetop.
Frequently asked questions
You can make vegan chorizo out of all kinds of things! For this recipe, we are using walnuts and chickpeas with tons of spices. You can also use other vegan meats, like tofu, like I do with my tofu sausage crumbles. You'd just use different seasonings for a chorizo-like flavor profile.
Yes! Vegan chorizo pasta keeps for 3 to 5 days, and you can reheat it in individual bowls in the microwave or all at once in a pan on the stovetop. It's great for meal prep!
More vegan pasta recipes
Vegan Chorizo Pasta
For the cream sauce
- ½ cup cashews soaked in hot water for 10-15 minutes, then drained
- ⅓ cup water NOT the soaking water
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- salt and black pepper to taste
For the vegan chorizo
- ½ a medium onion peeled and cut into big chunks. You can use red or sweet onion.
- ½ cup walnuts
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 15 ounce can of chickpeas drained and rinsed
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- pinch of cinnamon
- pinch of cloves
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
For the chorizo pasta
- 2 cups pasta use shells, penne, or other bite-sized pasta
- 1 tomato diced
- 12 ounces frozen spinach thawed and drained
- 1 cup frozen corn thawed
- Start soaking your cashews and cooking the pasta while you make the chorizo. When the pasta finishes cooking, transfer it to a large mixing bow.
Make the chorizo.
- Combine the onion, walnuts, and garlic in your food processor and pulse a few times to break them up. Then, add all of the remaining chorizo ingredients, except the olive oil, and pulse until you have an even mixture.
- In a skillet, heat the oil over medium high. Add the contents of the food processor, and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, until the mixture begins to brown and turns fragrant.
Make the cream sauce while the chorizo cooks.
- Combine all of the cashew cream ingredients in your blender, and puree until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Assemble the chorizo pasta.
- In a serving bowl, toss together the cooked pasta, chorizo, cashew cream, tomato, and the warm, thawed veggies. Serve immediately.