This easy Vegan Creamy Cannellini Bean & Tomato Pasta recipe is one of those speedy store cupboard standby recipes that you can make on a cold, grim night in the middle of winter, or enjoy made with freshly picked tomatoes after a long day out and about in late summer.
I love a recipe that's a bit flexible, because despite writing my own recipes, I never actually keep to them. (shh. Don't tell anyone- that goes for baking too, which might explain a thing or two about some of my lack of success in various bakes..)
Where a recipe like this is brilliant is that you don't need to worry overly much that it won't 'work out'. It's a simple enough formula that makes the most of a few key ingredients.
Cannellini Beans are creamy white beans that lend themselves to being cooked down into a pasta sauce. When crushed a bit with a fork or masher, they turn themselves into a lush kind of 'sauce' that brilliantly coats tagliatelle or other long pasta. You could easily substitute other white beans here too, fat butter beans, haricots or even borlotti would work deliciously. I used tinned beans for speed, but if you have some pre-cooked beans ready, use those instead.
The tomatoes I've been using recently to make this recipe have been freshly picked from my garden & smell deliciously rich & ripe, not needing much at all in the way of cooking. If you can't get ripe tomatoes, a tin of tomatoes is a much better bet than out of season supermarket tomatoes. In fact, this recipe (like so many Italian inspired recipes) is pretty much just as delicious made entirely from store cupboard ingredients as it is with fresh.
I sploshed some white wine into the Cannellini Bean & tomato mix as I made it, but it's by no means necessary, just add a little extra water as needed. Be sure to give the cannellini a good mashing with a potato masher or fork when you add the water or wine. This creates the lovely creamy sauce!
Now. Put the pasta water on to boil & get prepping. By the time the pasta is ready, your Vegan Creamy Cannellini Bean & Tomato sauce will be complete and ready to stir into the pasta. Yummy Vegan Dinner in less than 20mins.
Handy Shopping Tips:
Vegan Creamy Cannellini Bean & Tomato Pasta
For accuracy, I measure all ingredients in metric as standard, then convert and test the recipe for American cup measurements etc.
(Heads up Aussie and UK readers- your measurements in cups are sometimes different, so please use metric or check you have the correct cup and spoon type!!)
- 200g (2 cups) Dried Pasta- such as egg free tagliatelle or spaghetti (I always allow for 100g dried pasta per person. Add some extra so you can have some for lunch the next day as it makes a decent amount of sauce.)
- 240 g (1½ cups) cannellini beans (equivalent to 1 drained tin/can)
- 400 g (1½ cups) fresh or tinned tomatoes (Use fresh if in season, otherwise use a tin/can!)
- 3 cloves garlic (or use more if you lurrrrve garlic)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- glug good olive oil
- 100 ml (½ cup) white wine (totally optional, but nice)
- 2-3 tablespoon nutritional yeast (optional, but gives a lovely cheesy flavour & helps create a creamy texture)
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Put your pasta water on to boil.
- Now chop the garlic & tomatoes (if using fresh). Open the tin of beans, drain & rinse.
- Add the garlic and olive oil into a large pan & gently heat.
- Add in the tomatoes , drained cannellini beans & oregano
- By now the pasta water should be boiling. Add a big pinch of salt and the pasta.
- Add the wine (if using) & nutritional yeast to the sauce.
- By now the cannellini beans will be getting nice and soft. Help them break down with a potato masher, a fork or the back of a spoon. Add a little of the pasta cooking water if it's looking dry. Season with a little salt.
- Once the pasta is cooked, drain it (keep a little of the pasta water aside in case you need it)
- Tip all the pasta into the sauce and give it a good old stir. Add extra olive oil and/or salt to season.
- Serve immediately with fresh herbs (basil is nice) or some nutritional yeast to sprinkle over.