Creamy Sweet Corn Pasta
This Creamy Sweet Corn Pasta is rich and delicious, yet packed with nutrients and kid-friendly. The unique flavors blend together for a tasty, sweet and savory comfort dish!
Creamy pasta recipes might just be one of my favorite meals at the moment. A few weeks ago, I came up with my creamy vegan Roasted Red Pepper Pasta, and since then, my mind has still been on the cream of the crop of pasta – though this time it’s the corn crop.
As much as I love corn, it’s one of those things that I buy and find that I never have a use for other than eating it straight from the cob – which, don’t get me wrong, I love. However, I wanted to try something new with my fresh corn. And because my last attempt at creamy pasta went surprisingly well, I decided to give it another go with my corn on the cob. And so this sweet corn pasta was born!
While my creamy red pepper pasta uses tofu for creaminess, this sweet corn pasta uses cashews, which provide the rich flavor with a burst of healthy fat and protein. And to add some more healthy plant protein, I threw in some green peas, but you can also use edamame if you’d like.
When I served this for my husband and my son, they both couldn’t get enough, so I felt justified in the fact that I couldn’t either – it’s not just because I’m pregnant and hungry! Although this dish tastes like it’s too good to be healthy, it’s packed with nutrients. For that reason, I feel good about serving it to my 2-year-old. Along with the healthy fat and plant protein, the pasta itself provides a serving of fiber-packed whole grains, which have been shown to be protective against diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.
I used whole wheat pasta, but if needed, you can also use make this dish gluten-free by using brown rice pasta, quinoa pasta, or legume pasta. But keep in mind that most of us don’t need to fear gluten – check out my video on grains and gluten to learn more!
Do I need to use fresh sweet corn?
While fresh corn has a brighter taste, you can definitely use canned or frozen corn if that’s what you have on hand! Just make sure it’s a sweet corn variety. An ear of corn is about 3/4 cups, so to substitute canned or frozen corn, you’ll need 3 cups.
Can I make this sweet corn pasta ahead of time?
Definitely! I always recommend cooking in batches to make things easier during the week. Store leftovers in the fridge, and simply reheat in the microwave or on the stove before serving.
Do I have to soak the cashews before blending?
If you have a high-powered blender, you may be able to get by without soaking. However, you can always use the flask soak method, which just requires boiling water, adding the cashews, and letting them soak for 10 minutes.
- 12 oz whole wheat penne or pasta of choice
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- ¼ cup chopped scallion bulbs
- 4 ears of corn, shucked, cleaned, and kernels removed
- ⅓ cup water or vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ¾ cup cashews, soaked for 8-12 hours or "flash-soaked"*
- ¾ cup veggie broth
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 cup peas or edamame, thawed if frozen
- salt and pepper
- scallion greens, sliced
- basil, chopped
- Cook pasta until al dente (1-2 minutes before what it says on the package) with 1 tablespoon salt. Reserve ½ cup of the pasta water.
- Saute scallions with 1 tablespoon olive oil and a pinch of salt for about 2-3 minutes.
- Add half of the kernels and water or veggie broth and continue to simmer for about 3-5 minutes.
- In a high-powered blender, puree the cooked corn with lemon juice, cashews, veggie broth, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Heat remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium and cook remaining kernels along with 1 cup thawed peas (or edamame) until browned, about 3-4 minutes.
- Add cooked pasta, cashew corn sauce, and about ½ cup of the reserved pasta water to the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add more water if needed to achieve a creamy consistency.
- Garnish with green scallions and chopped fresh basil.
Weigh-in: What is your favorite way to eat sweet corn? Will you try this creamy sweet corn pasta?
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