Are we ready for my latest food obsession, this uber-creamy dairy-free alfredo sauce recipe?

This garlicky cashew alfredo sauce is just about the easiest pasta sauce I’ve ever made, dairy-free or not!

This dairy-free alfredo sauce recipe transforms store-bought gnocchi and just about any pasta into the most glorious plates of deliciousness ever. For real. And in under 10 minutes for the whole shebang!

A bowl of gnocchi smothered in vegan Alfredo Sauce with a glass of wine and a bowl of bread on the side.

Dairy-Free Alfredo Sauce: It’s All About the Cashews

As you’ve gathered by now, this is a completely vegan alfredo, so no dairy here. It’s all about the cashews.

By now, you probably know that cashews are a magical ingredient that, when blended with water, transforms into the most luscious cream.

An overflowing jar of vegan alfredo sauce

And during the pandemic crisis – especially when some groceries have been hard to come by – they’ve been the MVP of my pantry. I can use cashews to make coffee creamer, sour cream, an unbelievably delicious vegan shells and cheese … even a cashew parm for this vegan cacio e pepe! (I also can’t wait to try this cashew-based ice cream. Oh my goodness.)

And now, we have this vegan alfredo sauce, which might just be my favorite cashew cream recipe yet.

Dairy Free Alfredo Sauce Ingredients

This vegan Alfredo sauce has a super short list of ingredients, and just about the easiest prep EVER.

We’ve got:

  • Cashews. Of course!
  • Water
  • Fresh garlic
  • Nutritional yeast and onion powder for umami goodness
  • Salt and pepper

That’s it!

A tray with cashews, garlic, nutritional yeast, onion powder, salt, and pepper - the ingredients for vegan Alfredo Sauce.

How to Make It (in 5 Minutes!)

Then, all you do is whip it all together in your high-speed blender. Vitamin and Blendtec are where it’s at here, but a lower-powered blender may work – just be sure to soak your cashews first.

I like to put the water on to boil, then throw all of the ingredients for the sauce in the blender. And then, while the gnocchi or pasta is cooking, I blend the sauce. Drain the gnocchi or pasta, add it back to the pan, add the sauce, stir, done! Seriously – SO FAST.

Close-up of a bowl of creamy gnocchi smothered in vegan Alfredo Sauce.

I hope this one is as huge a winner for you as it has been for our family.

5 from 3 votes

5-Minute Dairy-Free Alfredo Sauce Recipe

Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
Author: Kare
Yield: 4
This luxuriously creamy, garlicky "alfredo" sauce whips up in minutes and transforms pasta or gnocchi into a rich, satisfying meal. Dinner on the table in 10 minutes?! Yep!


  • 3/4 cup raw cashews*
  • 1/2-3/4 cup water
  • 1 medium clove garlic (peeled**)
  • 2 teaspoons nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt + more to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper + more to taste

For serving:

  • 14.5-ounce package gnocchi or 8 ounces cooked pasta
  • Fresh minced parsley or chiffonaded basil


  • High-speed blender (like a Vitamix)


  • Place cashews, 1/2 cup water, garlic, nutritional yeast, onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper into the pitcher of a high-speed blender. Puree until completely blended, 1-2 minutes. The sauce should be the consistency of eggnog, buttermilk, or a thick heavy whipping cream. If it’s thicker than that, add 2 tablespoons of water at a time until you get it there. Taste and add additional salt and pepper if desired.
  • Cook and drain pasta or gnocchi and add back to the pot. Pour sauce over the top and toss until gnocchi or pasta is coated. Add herbs if you like and serve!


* I find that with my Vitamix high-speed blender, it’s not necessary to soak my cashews first. If you want to ensure a creamy sauce or have a different type of blender, try soaking the cashews for 20 minutes in boiling water first. Drain, rinse, and proceed.
** Depending on your blender, you may want to chop your garlic first to help prevent large chunks in your sauce. I add a whole clove to my Vitamix and it purees completely.

Gluten-free note

The sauce itself is gluten-free, but of course, you’ll want to select a gluten-free pasta or gnocchi.
Adapted from this creamy vegan garlic pasta from Chocolate Covered Katie.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 0.25cup, Calories: 140kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 295mg, Potassium: 180mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 9mg, Iron: 2mg

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