Pasta with Cashew Truffle Cream Sauce ~ Savory Simple ~ www.savorysimple.netPasta with Cashew Truffle Cream Sauce

I’ve always had a bit of a love/hate relationship with dairy. When I was younger I had chronic stomach issues and was diagnosed as being lactose intolerant. I’m pretty positive it was either an incorrect diagnosis or I grew out of it because I eat dairy all of the time these days and it never seems to bother me. However…

I still like to limit my dairy. I’ve heard it can have negative health effects though I’m not sure if any of them are scientifically proven. Everything in moderation, right? There are certain ways to enjoy ice creamcheese sauces and even cream without actually consuming dairy. Did you know that cashews can be turned into a “cream” sauce? When raw cashews are soaked overnight and then pureed with water, they make an amazing cream sauce or soup base. I made this pasta with cashew truffle cream sauce for Jeff last week and didn’t tell him it was dairy free until he had finished eating. He was shocked! You really can’t tell it’s not a cream sauce. I promise. I will point out the obvious, though- cashews are still high in fat and calories so I am not calling this a lighter substitute. Just sayin!

Pasta with Cashew Truffle Cream Sauce ~ Savory Simple ~


Pasta with Cashew Truffle Cream Sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4-6 servings
  • 2 cups raw cashews, soaked overnight in cold water
  • 1½ cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1½ tablespoons white truffle oil
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • fresh basil, sliced thin
  • 1 pound pasta (I used fettuccine)
  1. Drain the cashews, discarding the soaking water.
  2. In a sturdy blender or food processor, puree cashews and 1½ cups fresh water on high speed. Scrap down the sides to make sure everything is incorporated. Continue pureeing until very smooth.
  3. Add salt, nutritional yeast, dried thyme, white truffle oil and pepper and blend.
  4. Prepare pasta according to package instructions.
  5. Toss the sauce and pasta together. Garnish with basil before serving.


More pasta recipes

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Savory Simple – Slow Cooker Meatballs and Marinara 
Savory Simple –  Cold Sesame Soba Noodles
Sumptuous Spoonfuls – Cilantro Almond Pesto Shrimp Pasta
Pass The Sushi – Enchilada Pasta Skillet
What’s Gabby Cooking – Red Pepper Pasta with Mushrooms and Spinach

  • DB-The Foodie Stuntman

    This looks delicious! I’ll have to try it myself.

    • Jennifer Farley

      I hope you do! It’s pretty awesome.

  • Averie

    I LOVE using cashews/cashew cream. I just posted the other day how cashews are like vegan butter. Rich, creamy, quite flavor-neutral when blended. This is a great looking sauce!

    • Jennifer Farley

      Totally underrated, right? Cashew cream is amazing.

  • Ann from Sumptuous Spoonfuls

    This sounds amazing, Jennifer! Thanks for the link to my pasta recipe too … :)

    • Jennifer Farley


  • Valerie

    The mere combination of words – Cashew. Truffle. Cream. Sauce, is dreamy enough (your photos take it over-the-top!). So happy that you got over your aversion to dairy. :D

    • Jennifer Farley

      Thanks, Valerie!

  • Paula

    There are so many things that I love about this recipe Jen: I eat pasta all the time, LOVE cashews and have two bottles of truffle oil that need to be used. Outstanding recipe! OMG, I´m dying to try it.

  • Marie

    Love this Jen! The addition of truffle oil is genius – yum!

  • Lauren

    Looks amazing! I have been skeptical of cashew “cheese” and “cream” sauces, but seeing this from a trusted non-vegan source makes me want to try it…

    • Jennifer Farley

      Thanks Lauren! I like to think of vegan food as its own cuisine with lots of potential. But like every other cuisine, I’ve had a lot of BAD vegan food.

  • Anna

    I always learn something from you, Jen! Cashew cream? I am on it!

  • Laura (Tutti Dolci)

    I love the sound of that sauce! Cashews are a favorite nut and dairy and I are not always the best of friends, so this would make a great alternative.

  • Chung-Ah

    Cashew cream?! Why have I only heard of this now?!!

  • Marta

    Thank you for a tip about cashews. Always good to learn something new.

  • Tieghan Gerard

    This looks delicious!! So pretty!

  • carol

    What an absolutely decadent, gourmet dish! Lovely, Jen! PS: I need to come over for photo lessons! ;}

    • Jennifer Farley

      Psssh, your photos are great! Did you see my comment about the DC Food Blogger HH? It’s once a month, I’d love to meet you at some point!

  • Laura Dembowski

    I also try to limit the amount of dairy I eat
    Though I have never been diagnosed intolerant, I feel like dairy is heavy and too much makes me not feel well. Love the idea of using cashews. The photo looks great – like the creamy pasta I dream about but don’t eat. I am not much of a fan of truffle oil though, as I find it to be quite artificial tasting.

    • Jennifer Farley

      It would be good without the truffle oil as well. You could go in a totally different direction like garlic rosemary. I love white truffle oil BUT it has to be a really good brand. The stuff they sell at the grocery store tastes horrible.

      • Stacey

        Are there any brands that you would like to recommend? I want to try this recipe and I will be using the truffle oil for the first time.

  • ashley – baker by nature

    Gah, JEN!!!! I am in love with this pasta dish. You’re seriously fab!

  • Heather

    So let’s pretend I love this recipe but I do not live within 50 or 60 miles of truffle oil. I know that there’s no substitute but… if there were what would you recommend?

  • Nutmeg Nanny

    Yum, this looks amazing :) I love cashew cream, it’s so delicious!

  • Kirsten

    This looks delicious–and a reason to add a bottle of truffle oil to my pantry, since thus far I’ve resisted the urge. Though I’ve got plenty of garlic and rosemary in the garden and could go in that direction, as well.


  • Tracey

    Oooh, I’ve heard about this trick with cashews, but never tried it. I’ve always been skeptical since I don’t like nuts, but if you say I won’t be able to tell it’s not a cream sauce I just might have to take the plunge :)

  • spree

    Cashew cream is such a wonderful discovery, and this dish looks absolutely fantastic Jennifer!

  • foodwanderings

    What a great idea to substitute the creamy sauce with the cashews. Great idea to add the truffle oil too as an alternative for the lactose intolerant & delicious in general too!

  • Karen (Back Road Journal)

    This is a dish that I know my husband would be crazy about.

  • Jill

    This looks fab, I absolutely love cashew nuts and would never have thought to have used them in this way. Might have to get the ingredients and make this tonight. Have pinned!

  • sally

    I have always wanted to make a “cream” sauce from cashews. I have never tried it! I’m not sure what I am waiting for. It looks wonderful Jen! I don’t eat too much dairy either (unless it’s in my baked goods).

  • sandra

    this looks amazing and I just happen to have some white truffle sauce burning a hole in my pantry.

  • Karen D

    This sounds so delicious! Bookmarking for some night soon (have to get some cashews!)

  • Aviva

    This was delicious!! I loved it. How many servings is it supposed to make? I used about 1/4c or maybe a tad more ;) Trying to guesstimate the calories for a cashew based sauce! Thanks!

    • Jennifer Farley

      I’m so glad you liked it! I always hate guessing servings for pasta recipes because it’s so different depending on the individual (for example, what my husband considers 1 serving is more like 3 servings to me). If you used 1 pound of pasta I’d look on the box to see how many servings the manufacturer says the box has.

      • Aviva

        I made a medium sized spaghetti squash :-) I suppose 7 servings per box o pasta, then 7-8 of the sauce :)

        • Jennifer Farley

          What a great idea, I’ll have to try that!

  • Diane

    Is the nutritional yeast same with the fresh yeast for making bread? Cheers :)

    • Jennifer Farley

      I’m glad you asked! It’s actually completely different. You can find nutritional yeast in many stores. This is the brand I typically use:

  • danielle

    Is there a way to substitute cashews or for another nut? I have a peanut and cashew allergy. I know I could make my own regular milk/flour/cheese based alfredo, but I like your dairy-less recipe!

    • Jennifer Farley

      I honestly can think of any other nuts that will create the same sort of cream sauce as cashews :( That doesn’t mean it can’t be done… but I’m not sure what to suggest. Sorry about that!

  • Elle

    can’t wait to try this! This counts as Vegan right?