This is a Variation on a Root Formula, a simplified recipe that shows which ingredients
are core and which can be changed to create different flavor combinations or use what you
have on hand. See our other variations at the bottom of the of the No-Cook Pasta Sauce Root Formula page.
This creamy No–Cook Blender Pasta Sauce is the quickest pasta sauce you’ll ever make. Once you see how easy and delicious it is, we’re betting it will become a regular weeknight dinner formula. If you have on hand one of the following: fresh spinach or tomatoes, canned artichoke hearts or jarred roasted red peppers, you can make enough sauce for a pound of pasta—from gathering the ingredients to tossing it with the pasta—in about five minutes. This sauce comes together so quickly, make sure to start boiling your pasta water before prepping the sauce.
The nutritional yeast contributes flavor, giving this sauce the umaminess you’d get with Parmesan cheese. You could substitute 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, but in fact, we prefer the nutritional yeast in this particular recipe. Its powdery texture keeps this uncooked sauce silky.
Since this no–cook pasta sauce is vegetable-based, you don’t need another, but we like the bulk and substance a second vegetable adds to the dish. To keep it simple, however, we usually stick with two of our favorite frozen vegetables—peas and spinach. Peas are especially good with this Variation as well as the Spinach Variation, while spinach is well suited to the Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Variations.
This room temperature sauce tossed with hot pasta results in a sauce that’s not too hot and not too cold—just the kind of warm you want for a sunny summer supper. And if there happen to be leftovers, they re-heat well. Just add a little water and warm it gently stove-top, seasoning with additional salt and lemon juice.
Spinach No-Cook Blender Pasta Sauce
- 1 8 ounce bag fresh spinach
- 1 ripe avocado, halved, pitted, and peeled
- 1/2 cup plant-based creamer, such as oat
- 1/2 cup packed mixed Soft Fresh Herbs: dill, parsley, mint, basil, chives, cilantro, oregano
- 1/4 cup each: lemon juice, olive oil, and nutritional yeast
- 3 medium garlic cloves
- salt and ground black pepper
- Place all ingredients, including a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper, in a blender or food processor; process until pureed. Taste and adjust seasonings. Sauce can be covered and refrigerated for several days; return to room temperature—or gently reheat—before using.