Is there anything more perfect than a warm bowl of pasta with a rich, delicious sauce? Pasta dishes can be quick and simple to make and so versatile: everything from mac and cheese and lasagne to spaghetti Bolognese and creamy pasta bakes. No wonder some people worry they will lose all this if they become vegan. They needn’t worry at all. Most pasta is vegan, and all your favorite pasta-based dishes can still be made just as delicious.
Is All Pasta Vegan?
Not every kind of pasta is vegan, though most is. Fresh pasta tends to be made with eggs, and in fancy restaurants, this is the kind you are likely to be served. In supermarkets, if the pasta you normally buy is refrigerated, check the label. It probably contains eggs.
What Pasta Is Vegan?
Dried pasta in all its beautiful forms is almost always vegan. It’s just made from wheat and water, so you can still enjoy spaghetti, tagliatelle, macaroni, fettuccine, and all the other shapes and types you love. There are also spinach- and tomato- flavored pastas and, if they are on the shelves rather than in the refrigerator, these are vegan too. You will also find vegan gluten-free pasta readily available in all leading supermarkets. There is plenty to choose from!
Vegan Pasta Brands
Ronzoni is a popular brand with a variety of options including linguine, rotini, and capellini.
Another everyday brand is Barilla, which makes the wavy lasagne sheets alongside rigatoni, shells, and mini farfalle – those cute little bows.
This company has a good range of vegan pasta including macaroni, vermicelli, and – our own personal favorite – alphabet pasta. It’s important to write sonnets while you eat.
Not only are their pastas organic and vegan, they make gluten-free options too. Their supergrain pasta is made from corn, rice and quinoa. Delicious!
Which Types of Pasta Contain Eggs?
It is usually only fresh pasta that contains eggs so if it is the refrigerator section of your supermarket it’s probably not vegan. As a rule of thumb if it’s on the supermarket shelf, it’s vegan.
How Can You Tell if Pasta Is Vegan or Not?
Read the label! As pasta usually only contains two or three ingredients, it takes very little time to check. If it has wheat (often durum wheat or semolina) and water, then it’s vegan. If it also contains eggs, then it’s not. In most restaurants, the pasta will be vegan, but in fancy restaurants, it is likely to be fresh and will contain egg. If the menu is not explicit, just ask your server.
Is Pasta Sauce Vegan?
Pasta sauces come in many varieties and often contain a surprising number of ingredients. Many are vegan, but some may contain anchovies, cheese, or other milk products. Check the label to be sure. But if the one you pick up first isn’t vegan, keep looking because vegan options are most definitely there! Look out for marinara sauce, roasted garlic, and arrabbiata.
Is Pesto Vegan?
Pesto is traditionally made with parmesan cheese, which would make it not suitable for vegans. However, since it contains just a handful of ingredients – basil, pine nuts, garlic and olive oil – and it takes just a moment to blitz them together, you can make your own vegan pesto at home very easily. It tastes a whole lot better when made fresh but if time is tight, some supermarkets do stock vegan pesto and other vegan pasta sauces such as the creamy alfredo.
There is no need to miss out on your favorite pasta-based dish when you become vegan. Dried pasta is already vegan, and sauces and pesto can be made or bought vegan, too. Delicious rich vegan Bolognese is easy to make, and both creamy and cheesy sauces can also be made vegan very easily, by switching the cream for vegan cream and the cheese for vegan cheese. Simple!