From lasagna to pesto-laden, made in just one pot or as a colorful salad — we have to admit, we love pasta in all its shapes and sizes. That’s why we had to add this delicious vegan white sauce pasta with vegetables to our blog!
If you’re in need of a simple yet scrumptious plant-based dinner idea, this colorful vegan pasta with white sauce is likely to become your go-to recipe.
Use any pasta of your liking along with some veggies you happen to already have in your kitchen and cook up a fantastic filling, easy and healthy plant-based pasta dish in around 30 minutes.
Needless to say, this dairy-free recipe is super customizable, family-friendly and can even be prepared ahead of time!
No matter if you want to call it pasta with bechamel sauce or vegan white sauce pasta, it is filled with all the goodness you want in a satisfying meal without any of the negatives you sometimes find in heavy pasta dishes.
You don’t need any butter, cheese, eggs or dairy milk to create this low-fat and high-fiber meal, plus you can go as easy or heavy on the vegetables as you like. We just love lazy weeknight dinners like these!
Let’s take a look at what’s needed to create this delicious vegan white sauce pasta and let us share our top tips around the recipe.
Is White Sauce Vegan?
Typically, white sauce is heavy in dairy products and therefore not plant-based or vegan. White sauce, also known as béchamel sauce, is often used in French and Italian pasta recipes, such as lasagna.
If you want to make a traditional white sauce that is vegan, you need to swap the dairy milk for a dairy-free alternative and use vegan butter or margarine. To add some cheesy flavor, a good pinch of nutritional yeast is highly recommended!
However, the low-fat white sauce for our easy vegan pasta recipe is not made with any flour or butter at all — it’s a fully whole food plant-based yet really flavorful dairy-free white sauce that only requires a handful of staple ingredients.
Is White Sauce Healthy?
Most white sauce recipes are not really healthy as they call for white flour, butter, cheese, eggs and dairy milk. None of these are very nutritious and, depending on the amounts used, can be high in saturated fat.
To create a white sauce pasta that’s super healthy and easy to make, there are some simple food swaps needed!
Our low-fat vegan bechamel sauce recipe is allergen-friendly, creamy, inexpensive and so easy to make — combined with some whole grain pasta and veggies of your choice, you end up with a really nutritious meal.Marinara Sauce With Zucchini Noodles →
The Best Vegan White Sauce Pasta
- Highly customizable
- Very family- and kid-friendly
- Easily made gluten-free
- Flavorful, luscious & oil-free
- No cheese or eggs needed
- Packable and preppable
- Lazy weeknight dinner
- Budget-friendly & low in allergens
- Great way to eat more veggies
- Low-fat yet creamy and delicious
Our whole food plant-based recipe is loved by kids and a really mess-free dinner as you don’t have to use a lot of utensils.
For a super lazy version, you can just boil your vegetables in the same pot as your pasta (instructions over at kitchn.com) and prepare the white sauce ahead of time!
While our healthy vegan white sauce recipe isn’t how you traditionally make béchamel, you still want to give it a shot and let the creaminess and herby flavor surprise you!
Vegan White Sauce Pasta Ingredients
- Pasta — we like to use macaroni-shaped pasta but any will work from white to whole grain, gluten-free or legume-based.
- Vegetables — yes, this colorful vegan pasta dish needs some nutrient-rich veggies to make it ultimately healthy and scrumptious! Our recipe calls for some bell pepper, broccoli, spinach, onion and corn.
- Dairy-Free Milk — this is the base for our low-fat vegan white sauce, choose between almond, soy or coconut milk (the latter of which is higher in fat).
- Cornstarch — our gluten-free binder for the creamy béchamel!
- Spices — that’s where your meal comes to life; we love to use garlic, vegetable broth, oregano, nutritional yeast and white pepper for this recipe.
- Plant-Based Protein — this is optional but we love to add a handful of chickpeas to this vegan white sauce pasta for some added texture and filling protein!
As you can see, our simple white sauce pasta recipe is highly customizable to your preferences or needs! Just swap any of the ingredients to make this meal work for you and find some more ideas below.
Let’s go over the steps for how to make this healthy low-fat plant-based dinner!Dairy-Free Beginner’s Guide →
How to Make Creamy Low-Fat White Sauce With Pasta
This recipe is so beginner-friendly, the hardest part is choosing, washing and chopping your vegetables! While you do so, cook your pasta on the stove according to the package instructions.
Once the pasta is al dente, drain it (reserving ½ cup of the cooking water) and set it aside.
Move over to making your easy vegan white sauce by warming the almond milk in a saucepan on the stove. In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch in some cold vegetable broth and add it to the warm almond milk together with the rest of the spices.
Cook it for a few minutes over medium heat, stirring frequently until it starts to thicken and turn into a smooth, creamy sauce. Set aside to make the vegetables.
Get a large non-stick pan or skillet and sauté your diced onion in a spritz of vegetable broth for a few minutes, stirring frequently. Once translucent, add the bell peppers, broccoli, garlic, corn and chickpeas.
After another 5 minutes of cooking, add the fresh spinach and cooked pasta. Now, mix everything well with a spoon while pouring your homemade vegan béchamel over everything.
You also want to add some of the cooking water from earlier as the pasta will need some more moisture!
Tips for This White Sauce Pasta Recipe
Change your weekly pasta night up and swap the tomato sauce for our healthy vegan white sauce pasta!
Here are some additional ideas and suggestions so you can create the perfect pasta experience.
Adjust the Nutritional Profile
The calorie density in this vegan pasta recipe is relatively low and it’s therefore weight loss-friendly. However, if you’re not super keen on veggies or don’t have a huge appetite, you can reduce the added vegetables to suit your needs.
You can easily make this vegan white sauce pasta gluten-free by using gluten-free pasta. Since our béchamel sauce is made without flour and just uses some cornstarch, you’re all set!
If you don’t like or cannot have almond milk, simply choose any plant-based milk alternative of your liking. Depending on your choice, you can create a higher protein (soy) or higher fat (coconut) white sauce!
You can also make our bean-based vegan cheese sauce instead of the béchamel for lots of added protein or mix some tomato sauce with the white sauce for more veggie-power and a lower calorie content.
Vegan White Sauce Pasta Add-Ins
As we’ve mentioned before, this vegan pasta recipe is highly customizable so we wanted to share our favorite swaps and add-ins you can choose from when making your own!
- Bell peppers
- Spinach or kale
- Broccoli or cauliflower
- Green beans
- Fresh tomatoes
- Green onion
- Fresh herbs
- White beans or chickpeas
- Tofu or tempeh
- Vegan mock meats
- Vegan cheese
Serving, Storage & More
If you want to make a larger batch and enjoy this pasta over a couple of days, it’s best to store the three components individually and combine them when heating everything up with an additional splash of plant-based milk.
You can even make a baked version of this vegan white sauce pasta by dumping everything into a baking dish, putting it in the oven (perhaps with some shredded vegan cheese on top) and baking it until the top starts to brown.Delicious Vegan Lasagna Recipe →
More Easy Vegan Dinner Recipes
If you’re into easy plant-based recipes like this colorful vegan white sauce pasta, check out the following goodness we have on the blog!
Did you try this recipe and like it? Be sure to share your experience with us in the comments below and leave a rating. You can also Pin the vegan pasta recipe here and tag us on Instagram if you’ve made it — we’d love to see your creations.
- 8.8 oz macaroni pasta, dry (250 g)
- 1 medium broccoli, cut into florets
- 1 red bell pepper, de-stemmed and cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 orange bell pepper, de-stemmed and cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 cup corn kernels (165 g)
- 1 cup chickpeas, cooked & drained (165 g)
- 2 cups fresh spinach (60 g)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 yellow onion, diced
For the White Sauce
- 1 cup almond milk, unsweetened (240 ml)
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- ½ cup vegetable broth (120 ml)
- 1 tsp onion powder
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp dry oregano
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- Freshly ground white pepper
- red pepper flakes
- nutritional yeast
- Cook the pasta according to the package instructions, then drain (saving ½ cup of the cooking water) and set aside.
- Meanwhile, make the dairy-free white sauce by putting the almond milk in a saucepan over medium heat.
- Mix the cornstarch with vegetable broth in a small bowl, then add it to the warm almond milk in the pan with the rest of the sauce ingredients.
- Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently until it starts to thicken and turn into a smooth, creamy sauce.
- Let’s move over to the veggies! Add the diced onion to a large non-stick skillet and sauté for a minute over medium heat. Add a spritz of water or vegetable broth and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until translucent.
- Now, add the chickpeas and the rest of the vegetables except for the spinach and keep cooking for another 5 minutes over medium heat, stirring frequently.
- Add the pasta and spinach to the rest of the veggies, stir to combine, then pour the sauce over everything and mix thoroughly.
- Add two or three tablespoons of the pasta cooking water, as the pasta will absorb moisture.
- Finally, divide into serving bowls, garnish with red pepper flakes and nutritional yeast and serve warm.
- Any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for about 2-3 days. Keep in mind that it will thicken over time, so make sure to add a splash of dairy-free milk when heating the pasta up again.
- For a quick & dirty version, cook your veggies in the same large pot together with the pasta for a few minutes, then drain everything and add the white sauce.
- Feel free to choose any pasta you like from whole grain to gluten-free or legume-based.
- You can pick any plant-based milk when creating the vegan white sauce. Or try this high-protein bean-based cheese sauce!
- Find ideas for what else to add to this vegan pasta recipe in the article! You can also choose mixed frozen veggies for some more convenience.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 540Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 246mgCarbohydrates: 101gFiber: 18gSugar: 13gProtein: 26g
Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated automatically, their accuracy is not guaranteed. Just focus on whole plant-based foods and eat until satiety!