This creamy roasted vegetable pasta can be made in under 30 minutes and uses silken tofu instead of cream for a super creamy green sauce.
A good pasta dish just makes everything better. But you know you’re on to a winner when it’s good and can be made in under 30 minutes.
I love creamy pasta sauces, whether that’s some form of creamy tomato sauce or even a creamy pesto-ish sauce. I’m down, count me in immediately.
I also love when my pasta is full of veggies. I always have a few different vegetables on hand, so any dish where I can use a ton of them is always a winner for me. And it naturally ends up being a meal I repeat over, and over again.
Creamy Roasted Vegetable Pasta
I’ve literally had this dish twice a week for the last couple of months. It’s so incredibly easy to make whilst also being packed with flavour and veggies.
It consists of a creamy spinach and basil sauce (that’s also high in protein!), and a ton of roasted vegetables. I’ve used an aubergine (eggplant), a courgette (zucchini), mushrooms, and red onion. I also add fresh tomatoes and chillies at the end for a little burst of freshness.
It’s a super simple sauce to make and you can substitute the vegetables for any you like!
It’s part of my ‘30 Minute Recipes‘ series!
It is indeed!
This entire series will be full of recipes that can all be made in UNDER 30 MINUTES. They’re perfect for busy days, or for those evenings when you just want something quick.
In fact, they’re all recipes that I make for my own lunches and dinners. Though I’m always cooking for the blog, those recipes don’t make up my lunches and dinners.
So I usually have to make something quick in-between recipe shoots. Or I’m totally shattered by the time it hits 7pm and I don’t really feel like cooking after spending an entire day doing just that. That is when I need something quick and easy.
If this resonates with you, then I hope you find these set of recipes useful. You can find the rest of the recipes here.
It is all about the sauce here
It really is, this is where all the flavour is at. I like using spinach and basil as it adds a lovely green colour and it’s a great way of using up spinach. Basil adds a lovely flavour to sauces so make sure you use fresh here.
The texture of the sauce is also hugely important. This sauce should be creamy and smooth! And that is all down the star ingredient, silken tofu.
You can also use this sauce for cold pasta salads!
After blending the sauce, I often pour it over cooled pasta with a ton of fresh vegetables. And it makes for a great pasta salad on a hot day!
I like to add in grated carrots, tomatoes/sun-dried tomatoes, spring onions/scallions, cucumber, peppers, artichokes, and olives. But feel free to add whatever you like!
I do reduce the garlic when making a pasta salad and often actually substitute for garlic powder. As 2-3 cloves can be too overpowering when the sauce isn’t being heated.
So what is Silken Tofu?
Silken tofu is a very soft type of tofu, that differs from the regular tofu. Silken tofu will specify it’s silken or soft tofu on the packaging. It’s often sold in a carton and not refrigerated unlike regular tofu.
Silken tofu does not require pressing as it will completely fall apart if you try to place any weight on it. It has a very soft texture that’s creamy and melts in the mouth. Which makes it perfect to use for creamy sauces!
What vegetables can we use for this Creamy Roasted Vegetable Pasta?
Literally ANY you like or have on hand. That’s the great thing about pasta recipes like this, there are no set rules!
I’ve used an aubergine, courgette, mushrooms, red onion, and tomatoes. I didn’t roast the tomatoes but instead added them in at the end for little bursts of freshness.
You can use the same as me if you like, or just use whatever you have on hand/prefer.
How do the vegetables roast so quickly?
I’ve used an air fryer for this recipe which speeds things up significantly. This is what I’d recommend if you’re keen on making this recipe in under 30 minutes. If not, then it’s not necessary.
You could also easily roast the vegetables in the oven but it will take a bit longer. Plus you have to factor in the preheating time of the oven.
What you’ll need
The full recipe can be found at the end of the blogpost
- Fresh basil
- Silken tofu
- Red onion
- Red chillies
- Pasta of choice
You don’t have to use the same vegetables as me though! Use whichever you like/have on hand.
How to make this Creamy Roasted Vegetable Pasta
Let’s start with the creamy spinach and basil sauce
1) Place the spinach, basil, garlic, and silken tofu into a blender jug. You may need to add half the spinach, blend, and then add the rest once it’s reduced
2) Once smooth, your sauce is done! Nice and simple, right?! This sauce also works really well for a cold pasta salad
Now let’s roast the vegetables
1) Use whichever vegetables you like here, I’ve used an aubergine, courgette, red onion, and mushrooms. These are the vegetables I usually keep on hand, plus they work great here. Peppers would also work really well
2) Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt. Toss the vegetables to coat
3) You could roast them all in an air fryer like I have or alternatively in an oven. The air fryer is the quickest and most efficient method, so if you have one, it’s worth using it
Let’s boil the pasta and finish this Creamy Roasted Vegetable Pasta!
1) Boil your pasta in plenty of salted water just until it’s around a minute before being al-dente/done. Reserve a good cup/mug full of the starchy pasta water before draining
2) Once the pasta is done, add in all the vegetables
3) Also add in the sauce
4) And some chopped up cherry or plum tomatoes. I don’t roast these as I like the bursts of freshness they give when added in at the end
5) I also like to add in some minced red chilli for some heat – but this is optional
6) Season with salt and pepper because we haven’t seasoned the sauce yet!
7) Add in the starchy pasta water and mix on a low heat until creamy – around 1 minute
8) Plate up and enjoy!
Frequently asked questions
Can we use regular tofu instead of silken tofu?
You can, providing the regular tofu you use is labelled soft. Regular tofu is available as soft, medium firm, firm, and extra firm. Go for the softer variety to keep it as close to silken tofu as possible.
Can we use the sauce cold for pasta salads?
You can indeed, I have a section on this above in the blogpost with my suggestions for what I like to add!
If you enjoyed this recipe
Please do let me know! Leave a review and a rating below, I’d love to know how you got on.
Until then, happy cooking!
For the sauce:
- 349g pack of silken tofu
- 100g fresh spinach
- Large handful of fresh basil
- 2 cloves garlic
For the roasted vegetables:
- 1 aubergine/eggplant
- 1 courgette/zucchini
- 200g mushrooms, use any variety you like
- 1 red onion
- 2tbsp olive oil
- 1tsp salt
- 1tsp black pepper
For the rest:
- 350g dried pasta of choice
- 250g cherry or plum tomatoes, cut into halves
- 2 red chillies, minced - or use dried chili flakes
- 1tsp salt
- 1tsp black pepper
- Extra virgin olive oil or chili oil
- Extra red chillies
- Place the spinach, basil, garlic, and silken tofu into a blender jug. You may need to add half the spinach, blend, and then add the rest once it's reduced
- Once smooth, your sauce is done! Nice and simple, right?! This sauce also works really well for a cold pasta salad (see blog for more info)
- For the vegetables, first chop them all into bite size pieces. Then drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and black pepper. Place into an air fryer at 185'C/365'F for 20 minutes, tossing every few minutes. Alternatively roast in an oven at 180'C for 30-40 minutes (the oven will take longer)
- At the same time, boil the pasta in plenty of salted water until it's just around a minute before being done. Reserve a cup/mug of the starchy pasta water and then drain the pasta
- Add in the vegetables, the sauce, fresh tomatoes, and chillies (if using). Season with the remaining salt and black pepper as we haven't seasoned the sauce yet. Also add in the starchy pasta water whilst keeping the pasta over a low heat
- Cook for a further minute and adjust the consistency to your preference. If the sauce is too thick, add more of the starchy water
- Garnish with extra virgin olive oil, chilli oil, or more fresh chillies if desired
See blogpost for more information regarding silken tofu and using this sauce cold for pasta salads
Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 516Total Fat 19gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 0mgSodium 789mgCarbohydrates 76gFiber 14gSugar 24gProtein 19g