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Vegan Rose Sauce

vegan rose sauce

Happy Easter friends! How was your Easter weekend? Okay, so maybe Vegan Rose Pasta is not really that Easter friendly but when you are a vegetarian/vegan you tend to break all the food rules for holidays anyways. Like eating Mac + Cheese with Christmas dinner because… why not?

What did you eat for Easter dinner? J and I were not very traditional this year and stayed in to make homemade vegan sushi for dinner. It was sooo good! I’m by no means a sushi expert but making sushi at home is so much fun! But enough about sushi, this post is ALL ABOUT THE PASTA! Specifically, the best rose pasta I’ve ever had.

vegan rose sauce

I made this recipe last week and was planning on sharing some festive no-bake cookies today but asked you on Facebook + Instagram which recipe you’d rather see first and this pasta won by a landslide. Dinner then dessert, amiright?! πŸ˜‰

This Vegan Rose Sauce is SO luscious, rich, creamy and perfect. I honestly could eat this Vegan Rose Sauce with a spoon by itself. It’s that good. #SorryNotSorry #PassTheSpoonPlease

cashews and pine

The creamy part of this Vegan Rose Pasta is made without cream or butter ironically. Before I ate plant-based I used to love cooking with lots of cream and lots of butter. I was the creamy pasta queen. I still am the creamy pasta cream just without all the cream, butter and stomach aches that seemed to always followed a dairy rich meal.

So what’re the magic ingredients in this Healthy Rose Sauce? Cashews and Pine Nuts.

Now, just here me out if the idea of adding nuts to your pasta sauce sounds totally weird. Soaking the nuts in hot water while you make the pasta (or overnight if you’re a better meal planner than me!) makes the cashews and pine nuts dissolve into creamy tomato saucy goodness when blended with the tomato sauce, garlic and herbs. If the idea of nuts in pasta sauce still seems kind of odd to you think of the role that pine nuts play in pesto – they add a nutty and luscious element to traditional pesto just like in this Creamy Vegan Rose Sauce. Yum. πŸ™‚

and pine nuts

I’ve always LOVED cooking but I wish I reached out of my comfort zone earlier with my cooking by trying healthier alternatives and new ingredients (like the nutritional yeast in this sauce that adds the “cheesy” element!). I actually enjoy my cooking more now than the dairy heavy sauces I used to make and eat. You definitively don’t have to be vegan, vegetarian or lactose intolerant to enjoy dairy-free pasta sauces like this Vegan Rose Sauce. All you have to be is a #PastaLover plain and simple! πŸ˜‰ My partner J is not any of the above and looooooooovess this sauce. I served this twice for dinner last week & he said it’s his favorite pasta recipe yet. #BoyfriendApproved

If you look closely, I cooked the pasta with zucchini (I’m obsessed!) and sprinkled red pepper flakes and fresh parsley on top as a finishing touch. This Healthy Rose Pasta just screams Spring! Happy Pasta-ing, friends and have a wonderful week! πŸ™‚

vegan rose sauce

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Vegan Rose Sauce

  • Author: Ceara
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x


A luscious, rich and creamy healthy vegan rose sauce served over zucchini and pasta. A delicious pasta for Spring and Summer that will have your entire family coming back for more!


  • 500 grams/1 pound farfalle pasta
  • 2 zucchinis, chopped
  • 1/3 cup raw cashews
  • 2 tbsp pine nuts
  • 2 cloves garlic (or 1/2 tsp garlic powder)
  • 1 red or white onion (or 1 tsp onion powder*)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth or reserved pasta water
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil (lightly packed) (or 1 1/2 tsp dried basil)
  • 2 cups plain tomato sauce (pureed tomatoes)
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast*
  • Sea Salt + Pepper to taste


  • Fresh Parsley
  • Hot Pepper Flakes


  1. Soak cashews and pine nuts in boiling water for 20 minutes while preparing the rest of the ingredients (or soak the nuts overnight). In a large pot, cook pasta according to the directions on the box with the chopped up zucchini. Cook pasta until it is al dente.
  2. While the pasta and zucchini are cooking, prepare the sauce. Saute garlic and roughly chopped onions over medium high heat in vegetable broth or a bit of the starchy pasta water until the liquids are absorbed. Drain and rinse your nuts. Add the soaked cashews and pine nuts, sauteed garlic and onions, fresh basil, tomato sauce and nutritional yeast to the blender and blend until a thick and creamy sauce is formed. Add up to 1/2 cup of the starchy pasta water to the sauce if it is too thick (I added 1/3 of a cup). Taste and add sea salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Warm the rose sauce over medium high heat and toss with the drained hot pasta and zucchini. Sprinkle with hot pepper flakes and parsley. Enjoy!


1) Substitue farfalle pasta for pasta of choice.
2) If you are in a rush, substitute fresh ingredients for dried basil, garlic and onion powder. Start with the amounts given in the recipe, taste test & add a bit more if necessary. Switch the basil for herbes de provence for a different spin on this sauce.
3) Leave out the zucchini if necessary or substitute with another vegetable (I love making this with mushrooms).
4) If you do not have pine nuts on hand substitute with 2 tbsps of raw cashews.
4) I’ve made this pasta without the nutritional yeast & it’s still delicious (but a bit less “cheesy”).

  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Category: Mains
  • Cuisine: Italian

ceara s kitchen

If you do end up trying this Vegan Rose Sauce, I love seeing your delicious #CearasKitchen creations. Share it with me on Instagram @CearasKitchen and remember to tag #CearasKitchen so I don’t miss it or share it on my Ceara’s Kitchen Facebook page. Happy Cooking, friends πŸ™‚

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  2. I must say, I’ve been making this recipe for about a year and a half now. It is absolutely my favourite recipe and I make it at least once every couple weeks! Thank you so much for sharing. You made this vegan very happy! πŸ™‚

  3. hey, this recipe looks really good! It reminds me of a lot of traditional curry gravies minus the fragrant spices. I’m wondering if you were inspired by an indian recipe or if you just wanted to vegan it up? that’s whats great about indian cuisine, they were doing it way before it was cool haha.


    check out this butter panner recipe, its soo similar and amazing. that site is an absolute gold mine as well, enjoy!

  4. Made this and substituted the cashews and pine nuts with hemp seeds. Came out good. Thanks for sharing your creamy pasta recipe. I just transition to veganism and it has been a bit tough, but when I see yummy recipes (like this one) it gets me excited to be able to make delicious plan based food. Thanks!

    1. Thank you so much N. Ra! I am so happy you enjoyed the pasta! All the best on your vegan journey!

  5. Made this recipe tonight. I changed it up slightly. I used vegan mozzarella cheese and a bit of nutritional yeast as well. Oh and I didn’t have any pinenuts, so I just used half a cup of cashews. It came out absolutely amazing! What a great recipe!

  6. Found this recipe through Yummly and made it for my husband tonight. Due to an allergy, I left out the pinenuts. It was wonderful and the hubby even went back for seconds! I have never cooked any veggies in with my pasta before and think I will keep doing this in the future now. Thank you for sharing.

  7. Ceara, my whole family LOVED this recipe! Everyone went back for seconds. And it’s so easy…my kind of meal! This will become a staple in our house! So yummy!

  8. Looks amazing!! I was wondering what recommendations you might have for a nut-free version. I’m deathly allergic, and it’s hard to get that dairy-free yet creamy flavor in the sauces I make. Maybe just leave these out entirely? Add more nutritional yeast? Any thoughts you might have would be greatly appreciated!!

    1. Can you eat seeds Emily? I would recommend subbing the cashews and pine nuts for equal parts sunflower seeds and maybe adding a bit more lemon and nutritional yeast to taste. If using sunflower seeds, I would soak them overnight in cool water or for an hour or so in hot water. If you can’t have seeds, I’m wondering if replacing the nuts with potato would work? I haven’t tried the latter but it just might work! I would love your feedback! Happy cooking πŸ™‚

  9. Wow, this looks so creamy and delicious! I just want to slurp it through the screen πŸ™‚ I love using cashews in my cream sauces— it makes for such a luscious bite. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you so much for the kind words, Chrysta! πŸ™‚ This dish does scream Spring – we’ve had it almost once a week since Spring started πŸ™‚

  10. Ceara, I have never head of the term rose sauce, so I thought there would be actual rose water in it, LOL!! Glad to see that there isn’t and instead, many of my other favorite ingredients. I have such a similar recipe on my blog you will laugh! It has pine nuts and red bell pepper in it though and a touch of lemon juice for some tang. I also serve it over pasta with fresh basil, it’s so similar! We really have such similar tastes which is why I’m so drawn to your recipes…..let’s see…you love pasta and post many of them and love cookies and posts lots of them….I do both of these….yep, we are foodie twins hahaha! This is a beautiful dish!
    Oh, and not weird at all to use nuts in cream sauces….that’ is what is so normal at least in the vegan world! πŸ™‚

    1. I love that we are on the same wave length girl! Bring on the pasta and cookies!! I actually started making this recipe last summer and seemed to never get around to sharing it on the blog. Your creamy sauce with lemon and red bell pepper sounds wonderful – I will have to try it next time (but your latest Mac + Cheese sauce first!!) πŸ™‚

      And the term rose sauce is deceiving come to think of it because it has nothing to do with roses, lol! It is actually rosΓ© sauce meaning a “pink sauce”.

      1. Yes we say Sauce rosΓ© in french! it’s my favorite sauce. I’ll try your recipe this week end…looks delicious!

  11. What a great go-to recipe! I bet this would be a great thing to make for lunch away from home too because there is no dairy in it. I love knowing my leftovers will be enjoyed come lunchtime πŸ™‚ Also, red pepper flakes are totally my secret weapon when it comes to any pasta! Great recipe Ceara!

  12. There’s nothing I don’t love about this dish right down to the color. Wish I was eating this dish right now, it’s going to the top,of my to do list.

  13. I love that you substituted cashews for cream you typically see in this dish! Super idea. And, that sushi I must try too, I think it would be fun to make with friends or my daughters. Thanks so much, Ceara. Have a great week!

    1. The cashews make such a delicious sub for the cream, Lori! πŸ™‚ And DIY sushi at home is the best – so much fun to make and eat. Thanks so much!

    1. You have to try this vegan sauce, Erin! I swear that you’ll never miss the cream πŸ˜‰ Hope your week is off to a great start!

    1. Thanks so much, Audrey! It certainly is delicious – our new favorite pasta dish around here πŸ™‚

  14. I swear you are a genius, Cear! When I first looked at the picture, I thought it could be almond cream with tomatoes, and never thought of pine nuts and cashews! This looks utterly delicious!

    1. Thank you so much, Hadia! You are so kind πŸ™‚ The pine nuts and cashews make such a delicious substitute for the traditional cream in this dish! Have a wonderful week!

  15. This vegan rose sauce looks really healthy and, what is more, glamourous! πŸ™‚ Hahah, thanks for sharing it with us, I’ll try it!

  16. So glad you had a great weekend, homemade sushi rolls are so much fun! This rose sauce is perfect, Ceara! I love that you used cashews and pine nuts, it looks so creamy and flavorful! The color is so pretty too and totally screams spring!

  17. This rose sauce looks gorgeous, Ceara! I can’t believe it’s from cashews and pine nuts. It sounds so delicious and perfect for spring! Since I’m a huge pasta fan, I think I could eat this sauce just about all the time. Pinned! Happy Monday, friend!

  18. Hi Ceara!

    This looks absolutely delicious. I never would have guessed this was made with nuts.
    I have a question about the yeast though: is nutritional yeast just the plain fresh baker’s yeast you can find in the supermarket or is this some special variant?


    1. Hi Kelly!!

      Thanks so much for commenting! Nutritional yeast is different than bakers yeast. It’s purpose in this pasta is that it adds a delicious cheesy element to the dish. I love using it for its flavor and awesome nutritional profile! You can read more about it here –> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutritional_yeast. I’ve made this rose sauce both with and without the nutritional yeast and like this dish both ways SO you can still make it without it if you don’t have it on hand! πŸ™‚ I started using NY in my kitchen last year and it’s become a huge staple in my cooking! You can find it at most health food stores, online (see link in the recipe) or at bulk food stores.

      I hope this answers your question clearly! Please let me know if you end up making this sauce – it’s a favorite around here!

      Have a wonderful day,

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