I hope you guys need an easy, high-protein meal idea because this white bean alfredo recipe delivers!
- It’s made with minimal, pantry ingredients.
- It comes in together less than 20 minutes.
- Depending on the pasta used, each serving is enough 20 grams of plant-based protein.
- White beans- This is the key ingredient in our ‘Alfredo’ which gives the sauce a nice boost of iron, protein and antioxidants. You will see in my photos that I used large northern kidney beans, but you could use kidney beans or cannellini beans as well. Disclaimer: I wouldn’t recommend substituting other types of beans (like chickpeas or black beans) as it would likely change the texture and flavor of the sauce.
- extra virgin olive oil I think this ingredient is essential as a little bit of fat has a huge impact on the sauce’s “mouth feel”. You can omit it if you want it to be oil-free, but the texture will be less creamy and feel less filling overall.
- shallot I chose shallots over onions because we don’t need a ton for this recipe (most onions will be oversized) and I personally think shallots have more flavor. But if you can’t find shallots, you can use equal amounts of finely chopped onions.
- Garlic- Fresh garlic makes a world of difference to the sauce, so it’s definitely worth peeling and chopping some for this recipe. If you’re in a pinch, you can also get away with garlic powder. I would start with 1/2 teaspoon, then do a taste test (after mixing) and add more if needed.
- vegetable broth Better Than Bouillon is my choice because it tastes so much better than any other store-bought broth I’ve tried.
- lemon juice You can use freshly squeezed lemon juice or the jar variety, which you can keep in your fridge for weeks.
- nutritional yeast Just a few tablespoons of nutritional yeast add a savory umami flavor to the sauce without the need to add cheese. You could skip it, but the sauce will likely taste bland without it.
- Sauté the shallot and garlic in olive oil.
- Place everything in a blender along with the cooked shallot, garlic and oil and blend until smooth.
Although I’ve only tested this with a Vitamix, I suspect a regular blender would do an adequate job of grinding the beans into a smooth and creamy sauce. A NutriBullet is also a great economical choice that works just as well as the Vitamix in small batches.
The sauce is a great source of protein, but using legume-based pasta and adding veggies like peas or spinach are great ways to boost the protein content of this meal. I also like to serve a meatless chicken fillet (Quorn is my favorite right now) on top, which really sums up the whole meal 30 grams of vegetable protein.
White bean alfredo sauce
Made with simple pantry ingredients, this creamy alfredo sauce comes together in under 20 minutes!
- 2 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil
- ½ Cup chopped shallots, about 3-4 shallots, depending on size
- 1 tablespoon chopped garlic, about 3 cloves of garlic, depending on size
- ¼-½ Cup vegetable broth
- 15 ounce can of white beans, drained (like Great Northern, Navy, or Cannellini)
- 3 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- salt pepper , to taste (I like about ½ teaspoon of each)
- 8th ounces Red lentil spaghetti , or pasta of your choice
In a medium-sized saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and cook for a few minutes until soft. Add the garlic and remove the pot from the heat. Let the garlic cook, stirring occasionally, while the pot cools.
Place drained beans, cooked shallot/garlic, ¼ cup broth, lemon juice, and nutritional yeast in blender. Blend until smooth and creamy. *The texture should be thick but easily pourable. If too thick, add remaining broth until desired texture is achieved.* Taste for flavor and add salt and pepper to taste.
In the same pot, bring water to a boil and cook the noodles according to package directions. Strain the cooked pasta for just a second, then immediately return to the pot, leaving a trace of the pasta water. The starch in the remaining cooking water makes for an even creamier sauce. Pour the sauce into the saucepan with the cooked pasta and stir until evenly coated. Serve warm and enjoy!
Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week
Calories: 367kcal, Carbohydrates: 58G, Protein: 20G, Fat: 11G, Saturated Fatty Acids: 1G, Polyunsaturated fat: 1G, Monounsaturated fatty acids: 5G, Sodium: 124mg, Potassium: 577mg, Fiber: 14G, Sugar: 6G, Vitamin A: 32ie, Vitamin C: 5mg, Calcium: 122mg, Iron: 9mg