Roasted swede is the surprise ingredient in this vegan carbonara. Served with smoky tempeh “bacon” pieces this is a satisfying and filling meat free meal that’s packed full of flavour.
This recipe is my new favourite dinner.
- warming, and
I'm a big fan of swede - also known as rutabaga - but this dish is the first time I've blended it into a sauce. It won't be the last though. This is one seriously delicious vegan carbonara sauce.
Those deep earthy flavours make this meal deeply satisfying. I hope you love it as much as I do.
What is carbonara?
A traditional carbonara is an Italian sauce made from pancetta or bacon, egg, garlic and cheese. Some non-authentic versions are made with cream.
Obviously this isn’t very vegan-friendly.
I’ve veganised my carbonara by making a sauce from roasted swede.
This might seem an unusual way to make a creamy sauce. However, the swede has some a delicious, rich flavour, that it lends itself really well to a vegan carbonara.
Why tempeh “bacon” pieces?
Marinating tempeh in liquid smoke and a few other simple ingredients gives it a lovely smokey flavour. It doesn’t taste exactly like bacon but it does taste delicious.
The tempeh “bacon” adds an umami element to this dish that makes it really moreish.
It also adds a protein hit to this dish, making it more of a complete meal.
How difficult is this vegan carbonara to make?
Not difficult at all. It will take a little time as for the best flavour you need to:
- marinate the tempeh for 30 minutes
- roast the swede for 40 minutes.
You can, however, do these two stages at the same time. Once marinated the tempeh doesn't take long to cook.
After this you simply need to blend the sauce and cook the pasta.
What should you serve with this meal?
This is a complete dinner and you don’t really need to serve anything with it.
However, you may wish to serve a green salad, some steamed broccoli or other vegetables on the side.
What ingredients do you need to make vegan carbonara?
You will need the following ingredients:
- liquid smoke
- soy sauce
- sunflower oil
- maple syrup
- olive oil
- medium swede (rutabaga)
- oat milk
- nutritional yeast
- sea salt
- black pepper
- garlic granules
- 300g spaghetti (check that it's egg free)
- parsley, chopped
Do you need any special equipment to make this dish?
You will need a blender to make this dish.
More swede recipes
- Maple roasted swede with cumin
- Mashed swede with nutmeg
- Cajun-spiced swede wedges
- Indian-spiced root vegetable curry
- Vegan hot pot
- Veggie sausage bake with swede and cauliflower
- Vegan shepherd's pie with swede mash
- Roasted swede
Pin swede carbonara with tempeh “bacon” bits for later
How to make vegan carbonara
If you have made this recipe and loved it please consider leaving a comment and rating below.
Please do not reproduce this recipe without permission.
NB: You will need a blender to make this dish.
Vegan swede carbonara with tempeh “bacon” bits
For the tempeh “bacon” bits
- 200 g tempeh
- 1 tablespoon liquid smoke
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sunflower oil
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
To make the swede carbonara
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium swede peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
- 400 ml oat milk
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic granules
- 300 g spaghetti
- Small handful parsley finely chopped
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C (fan)/200°C/gas mark 6.
For the tempeh
- First prepare your tempeh. Mix together 1 tbsp liquid smoke, 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tbsp sunflower oil and 1 tbsp maple syrup.
- Crumble or chop the tempeh into small pieces.
- Marinade in the soy sauce mixture for at 30 minutes.
- Heat 1 tbsp oil in a non-stick frying pan. Fry the tempeh, stirring often, until crispy.
For the carbonara
- Prepare your swede and place in a roasting tin. Drizzle with olive oil and roast for around 40 minutes, or until soft. Stir halfway through cooking time.
- Allow to cool slightly then place into a blender with 400ml oat milk, 2 tbsp nutritional yeast, 1 tsp sea salt, a little black pepper and 1 tsp garlic granules.
- Blend until smooth. If you prefer a runnier sauce add more oat milk.
- Cook the spaghetti according to the packet instructions.
- Drain and mix with the carbonara sauce. Warm through. You may have too much sauce, if so you can save for another meal or freeze.
- Serve with the tempeh bacon pieces and chopped parsley.
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