Vegan BLT Pasta Salad

Vegan BLT Pasta Salad

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!

Can you believe it’s already 2015 – where did 2014 go?  It was an AMAZING year for The No Fuss Vegan.  I had lots of highs, a few lows, but throughout it all I’ve become a happier person immersed in my passion with a community of amazing people – thanks for being here on the ride with me :)

Well this year I made a “vegan-y” resolution to try and get some more greens in my life!  I’ve been making so many elaborate dishes, but I haven’t been including enough greens in my diet – so today I’m going to START the new year with a recipe that includes a nice sized serving of greens!

The other day I was thinking about pasta salad and BLTs, I have a mind that wanders haha!  I suddenly thought, what if I made a vegan cross-breed of these two amazing dishes!  Thus, BLT pasta salad was born!

Now, you can’t just throw two things together and say that it tastes great – so I got creative with my recipe!  I used sun dried tomatoes, my own recipe for tempeh bacon, and kale instead of traditional lettuce! It’s a protein, calcium, and antioxidant powerhouse – so yeah it’s pretty awesome!

A good pasta salad also need a sauce – so I created a simple vegan “ranch” sauce that you can add if you want!  However, it’s totally optional, but let’s be honest vegan bacon and ranch is probably the most amazing combo…. did I mention this recipe is pretty healthy too!?!?

Okay I think I’ve doted on this recipe, so here it is!  Enjoy!

BLT Pasta Salad

Vegan BLT Pasta Salad - TKT Pasta Salad
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Cuisine: Vegan
Serves: 4 Large Servings
Ingredients
  • 6 oz Penne or Rotini Pasta
  • 3-4 Cups Roughly Chopped Greens
  • ⅓-1/2 Cup Dried Tomatoes, Thinly Sliced
Tempeh Bacon
  • 6 oz Tempeh, Cut into Small Cubes
  • 2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Maple Syrup
  • 1 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
Creamy Cashew Sauce (Optional)
  • ⅓ Cup Cashews, Soaked
  • 2 Tbsp Non Dairy Milk
  • ¼ tsp Dill Weed
  • ¼ tsp Celery Salt
  • ¼ tsp Onion Powder
  • ¼ tsp Garlic Powder
  • A Pinch of Salt & Pepper
Instructions
  1. Place all the ingredients for the Tempeh Bacon in a small container and let them sit in the fridge to marinate for about 1 hour, be sure to "shake up" the container a couple times during the hour.
  2. Once the tempeh is done marinating, cook the 6 oz of penne noodles, while you are doing this we will create the rest of the dish. (Drain when the are done and set aside)
  3. Heat a large pan up. Once it's warm throw in 2 Tbsp of water, your Tempeh bacon (including the remaining marinade), and the chopped greens.
  4. Cook the mixture until the greens are wilted and tender, be sure to mix well to coat the greens with the sauce.
  5. While the greens are cooking, put all the cashew sauce ingredients in a blender and blend into a smooth sauce.
  6. Place pasta, the bacon & greens, the sun dried tomatoes, and the cashew cream sauce in a large bowl. Toss until well combined!
  7. Enjoy!
Tips and Ideas
You can serve this hot or cold - it's delicious both ways!
Don't be afraid to play with different types of pasta, make this dish your own!
If you use kale as your green like I did, make sure to massage it first! That makes it a bit more tender and much less bitter.

What other “classic” dishes would you love to see healthy veganized?

Will you enjoy this as a side dish or a main course?

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