Avocado Spinach Pasta with a creamy, healthy avocado pasta sauce, is ready in 15 minutes and perfect for the whole family. This vegan avocado pasta is lovely, gluten-free, and packs 19 grams protein per serving. Satisfy your craving for luscious pasta without compromising your goals in life.
Why this recipe works
The flavors in this vegan avocado pasta sauce – with creamy avocado, pungent garlic, and bright lemon – combine to bring absolutely delicious flavor quickly and with few ingredients. The sauce is literally and simply blended while the pasta is cooking, making this recipe FAST and super easy.
And with spinach and avocado, this healthful, wholesome avocado spinach pasta delivers the goods: fiber, healthy monounsaturated fat, iron, and potassium. You can feel good serving this as a main course or side dish to your entire family.
The ingredients you need
- Chickpea pasta. I use the brand that comes in an orange box, and I find it right in the pasta section at the grocery store, not in some other special place. I don’t avoid gluten myself, but I often choose to use chickpea pasta for the added bonus of protein. Love this stuff!
- Garlic. Just one clove delivers so much flavor here.
- Baby spinach leaves. I actually prefer to use a 50/50 split of spinach and peppery arugula myself, so that is a variation to consider.
- Green onion. Bright peppery green onion brings so much flavor.
- Fresh lemon juice. Also, reserve the zest for finishing garnish.
- Extra virgin olive oil.
- Pasta water. Starchy pasta water heats and perfects the consistency of the avocado pasta sauce.
- Seasonings: kosher salt and pinch fresh cracked pepper.
- Chopped parsley and lemon zest for sprinkling.
More vegan dinner ideas
How to make Avocado Spinach Pasta
There are 2 simple parts to making this vegan avocado pasta recipe:
Cooking the pasta
First thing we do is get our pasta water boiling, then cook the pasta. For this, simply follow the directions on the package. My box gave a time range for boiling of 9-11 minutes, so I went with 10 minutes in the middle.
Before draining the water, take 1/4 cup pasta water to reserve for the sauce.
Making the avocado sauce for pasta
While the pasta is cooking, we simply blend the ingredients for the sauce together in a food processor. Super simple.
Once the pasta is done, we add the reserved 1/4 cup hot pasta to the sauce to bring it to the consistency so it will perfectly coat all our delicious tender pasta. Garnish with lemon zest and parsley and serve.
Variations and suggestions
As written, my recipe for Avocado Spinach Pasta is a basic, versatile sauce with endless possibilities.
- Replace the lemon with lime, add tomatoes and black beans, and finish with cilantro for a Mexican vibe.
- Use the sauce over potatoes, either baked or roasted.
- Avocado pasta sauce can also be used as a healthy veggie dip for snacks. French fries too!
- For an Italian variation, add cannelini beans, sundried tomato, and toasted pinenuts.
- To add more substance, add sautéed mushrooms, peas, and onion.
Ehh, I don’t recommend it unless you intend to freeze it (see below). As with all things avocado, this sauce will lose its vibrant color and oxidize with time.
Absolutely. I chose the chickpea pasta shells because 1) they were in my pantry, and 2) I wanted them specifically for the protein. If making this as a side to accompany a protein-rich entrée, protein would be less of a concern. I have made this sauce with conventional spaghetti and it was delicious.
Absolutely yes. I serve this to my family for meatless nights and for family members that avoid meat, but this deliciousness is lovely with chicken, shrimp, salmon, etc.
Surprisingly yes! At room temperature or in the refrigerator, avocado does not keep but it does actually freeze well, and then we also have the acidic lemon juice to assist. So, this pasta can be frozen for up to 3 days, thawed, and reheated in the microwave.
Avocado Spinach Pasta
- 8 oz chickpea pasta or pasta of choice
- 1 clove garlic
- ¼ cup (heaping) baby spinach leaves or arugula-spinach mix
- 2 green onions white and light green parts only
- 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium avocado pitted
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 1 pinch fresh cracked pepper
- ¼ cup hot reserved pasta water
- garnish: chopped parsley and fresh lemon zest
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the pasta and set timer to cook according to package directions.
- While the pasta is cooking, pulse the garlic, spinach, and green onion several times in a food processor. Add the lemon juice, olive oil, and avocado, and process until smooth. Add the salt and pepper.
- When the pasta is done, take ¼ cup hot pasta water and add to the avocado spinach sauce. Drain the pasta and return to the pot. Add the avocado spinach sauce and combine. Taste for seasoning. Top with parsley and lemon zest and serve.