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Vegan Pasta Bolognese

Updated: Jul 15, 2023

This is just deeply satisfying rich pasta goodness. Traditional bolognese sauce is made with meat, but here finely diced mushrooms and riced cauliflower give it that thick texture while tomatoes, garlic, and red wine impart a deep, rich flavor. Robust and aromatic you'll think you're sitting at a little table in a candlelit corner of a fine Italian restaurant.

Vegan Pasta Bolognese

Serves 6-8

12 oz mushrooms, finely chopped (any kind) 2 Tbs vegetable broth or water 1 large onion, finely chopped 2 stalks celery, finely chopped 2 large carrots, finely chopped 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped 2 Tbs tomato paste ½ cup dry red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon is good) 3 cups riced cauliflower (or chopped fine) 28 oz can crushed tomatoes 1 tsp oregano (or to taste) ½ tsp salt, optional ¼ tsp pepper 1 lb whole grain pasta (I like brown rice pasta - ziti or farfalle is nice) 1 cup oat milk (or other plant based milk) 3 Tbs reserved water from pasta a pinch of red pepper flakes, optional 1 Tbs nutritional yeast Fresh basil, chopped, to garnish (at least a ¼ cup) Heat the vegetable broth or water in a large pan over medium high heat. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally until golden brown.

Add onion, celery, carrots and cook, caramelize, until onions are golden brown. Add more water as needed to avoid sticking to the pan.

Add garlic and tomato paste stirring occasionally until softened (caramelized) and slightly darkened.

Add red wine and cook, deglazing the pan, until all the alcohol is evaporated.

Add cauliflower and cook until softened (approximately 5 minutes).

Add crushed tomato, oregano, salt and pepper, bring to a boil. Cover, lower heat to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water stirring occasionally until al dente. Reserve some of the pasta water. Drain and set aside, covered to keep warm.

Uncover sauce, add oat milk and 3 Tbs reserved pasta water. Add a little more red wine (a few tablespoons more if desired) and a pinch of red pepper flakes (if desired). Stir to combine.

Add the pasta to the pot with sauce and stir to combine. Add nutritional yeast (if desired) to pot and stir.

Divide among six bowls and garnish with fresh basil.


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