Serving up a wholesome & protein packed chickpea pasta with a delicious & simple roasted red pepper sauce! This 15 minute meal is filled with flavor, has the creamiest cashew tomato sauce, and is vegan + gluten-free friendly.
I’ve been working on quite a few different pasta recipes lately, and this one definitely has me excited!
If you’ve never had chickpea pasta before, I thought I’d introduce you to it since we eat it 1-2 times a week! It’s a pasta made completely from chickpea flour. It’s 100% plant-based, packed with protein, and naturally gluten free. It is the first healthy pasta I’ve tasted that can completely stand next to regular pasta noodles!
We’re huge fans. Especially when you pair the pasta with this super creamy red pepper tomato sauce! I’m not one for “creamy” sauces when it comes to pasta. But this one is light, fresh, and has zero dairy (thank you cashews!). We love it!
Nothing but simple pantry ingredients included in this recipe. You’ll need pasta sauce/tomato sauce (we recommend homemade or Rao’s), roasted red peppers, chickpea pasta (we used penne), salt & black pepper, fresh basil, and unsalted raw cashews.
How to Make Chickpea Pasta with Red Pepper Sauce
Make the sauce
While the pasta water is boiling, add all of your sauce ingredients to a high-powdered blender. Blend on high for 30 seconds until sauce is creamy and smooth.
Heat sauce and add pasta
In a pan bring sauce to a low simmer just to warm up – taste and adjust seasoning with salt & black pepper if needs more flavor. Add cooked pasta and stir in with sauce – it’s ready to serve!
Our Favorite Pasta Noodles
For this recipe, I used penne noodles by Banza. We also love using their shell, rotini, and rigatoni noodles for this recipe!
If you’d like to use lentil noodles instead, we love them equally as much! You can also use any traditional pasta noodles you have on hand.
Extra Tips to Remember
- Using cashews: I’ve never needed to soak cashews when I use a high-powered blender. If you do not have a tool like that on hand, you’ll need to soak your cashews in water for several hours or quick soak (see below). This will help soften the cashews so they come out creamy in the sauce and not chunky.
- Quick soaking cashews: (if you do not have a high-powered blender and want a quick method for soaking cashews). Fill a small pot with water and add cashews, cover and bring to a boil. Then remove from heat and let cashews soak in hot water for 15-20 minutes. Drain and use in recipe!
- Tomato sauce: we love using a homemade tomato sauce or arrabbiatta sauce. But whenever we don’t have this on hand, we use Rao’s marinara!
- Roasting red peppers: if you don’t want to use store-bought roasted peppers, you can make your own! It’s super easy and so so tasty.
How to Store & Freeze Leftovers
Store leftovers in an airtight container in fridge for 3-4 days. Reheat pasta and sauce in a pan with a splash of water if needed to help thin out sauce.
Freeze leftover sauce in a ziplock bag or airtight container for 1-2 months. Thaw and heat in pan when ready to use again.
Serve up this creamy pasta with your favorite crusty bread and a fresh salad of greens! It has all the comfort food feelings you could want, but without the heaviness of cream or regular wheat pasta. It’s truly the best!
We hope you enjoy this plant-based meal just as much as we do! xoxo
More Tasty Pasta Recipes
- Roasted Eggplant Pasta
- Cheesy Rotini Pasta with Roasted Vegetables
- Easy Spaghetti Pesto With Garden Tomatoes
- Lentil Bolognese with Parpadelle Pasta
Creamy Red Pepper Chickpea Pasta
- 8 oz box chickpea pasta
- 2 cups pasta sauce
- 1 12 oz jar roasted red peppers, drained
- 1/2 cup raw cashews (see notes if not using high-powdered blender)
- 1/2 cup filtered water
- 2 Tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (adjust level of spice to taste)
- 1 garlic clove *optional
- salt & black pepper (season to taste)
- Bring a medium pot with water to a boil, season water with generous dash of salt (about 1-2 teaspoons). Cook pasta until "al dente" – it should have a bite to it and not be too soft.
- In a high-powered blender, add tomato sauce, roasted peppers, cashews, water, red pepper flakes, and pinch of salt & pepper. Blend on high for 30 seconds or until consistency is super creamy and smooth. If sauce needs more flavor, add 1 garlic glove and season to taste with salt & black pepper if needed.
- Warm red pepper sauce in pan over LOW heat. Then add cooked pasta to sauce with chopped basil. Serve and enjoy!