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Close up view of vegan carbonara pasta garnished with parmesan and parsley in white bowl.

Vegan Carbonara


  • Author: Lexi
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This Vegan Carbonara Pasta is the easy, insanely delicious, tastes-just-like-the-real-thing recipe that you need in your life. It's creamy, rich, and has the characteristic salty, chewy bites from easy mushroom "bacon" that makes carbonara so delicious. No dairy, no eggs, no meat – but just as mouthwatering.


Ingredients

Units Scale

Vegan Carbonara:

  • 12 ounces spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened dairy free milk (we used oat)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup vegan parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 3/4 tsp black salt (kala namak)*
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley

Mushroom "Bacon"

  • 3 cups thinly sliced mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce (or tamari)
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon agave, maple syrup or brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

  1. To cook the pasta, add 12 cups of water to a large pot with 1 tablespoon of kosher salt and bring to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente and reserve at least 1 cup of pasta water when you drain.
  2. To make the mushrooms: in a medium-sized mixing bowl whisk together olive oil, soy sauce, liquid smoke, apple cider vinegar, agave, onion powder and pepper. Add in mushrooms and stir well to coat.
  3. Heat a large skillet (big enough to toss the pasta) over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and sauté over medium for 6-7 minutes, until the mushrooms start to soften, then increase heat to medium-high and continue cooking for a few more minutes until the mushrooms start to brown. Remove from heat and set aside.
  4. To make the sauce: While the mushrooms are cooking, heat olive oil in a small pot over medium heat. Add flour and whisk until a smooth paste forms. Add in the milk 1/2 cup at a time, whisking well between each addition, until it starts to thicken.
  5. Whisk in the lemon juice, nutritional yeast, parmesan, black salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often. The sauce should be thick enough to coat a spoon.
  6. Assembly: Add the cooked pasta and the sauce to the mushrooms and use tongs to coat well. Add in 1/4-3/4 cup of reserved pasta water to loosen up the sauce if needed.
  7. Serve with freshly parsley and enjoy.

Notes

Black salt/kala namak: It's a rock salt that has a sulfuric, pungent smell and taste that's similar to egg, which is why we use it in this recipe since traditional carbonara gets its creaminess from beaten egg. It's available at most specialty food stores, but if you can't find/don't have any, you can substitute with regular kosher salt.

Mushrooms: Basic cremini or white button mushrooms are perfect, but feel free to use shiitake or other wild mushrooms.

Milk: Just about any dairy free milk will work here, but we prefer using full fat oat milk, which is super creamy and neutral in taste. Whatever kind you use, just make sure that it's unsweetened and unflavored!

Storage: store leftovers in an airtight container for up to a 4 days. Reheat in the microwave and stir well until heated through.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian

Nutrition

  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 346
  • Sugar: 3.1 g
  • Sodium: 423.4 mg
  • Fat: 11.9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 49.2 g
  • Fiber: 2.6 g
  • Protein: 11.4 g

Keywords: vegan carbonara