Use this Vegan Sun Dried Tomato Sauce as a dressing, spread or sauce. It's delicious drizzled over a salad, tossed with pasta or spread on a sandwich. This creamy sauce is truly versatile and seriously scrumptious!
Soaked cashews are my favorite way to make a creamy vegan sauce! In this recipe, the cashews are combined with garlic, sun dried tomatoes and lemon juice to create an incredibly flavorful sauce.
After the cashews have soaked, it only takes 5 minutes to toss this sauce together and use it as a dip, spread, dressing or pasta sauce. Seriously, the possibilities are endless!
I'm so obsessed with this sauce! I toss it with salads for lunch, dip veggies into it as a snack and drizzle it over bowls for dinner. I've even drizzled it over my eggs for breakfast with a sprinkling of Everything Bagel Seasoning! So simple, so delicious!
This must-try sauce is guaranteed to become one of your favorites! It's healthy, vegan, gluten free, whole30 approved and easy to make!
What you'll need
- Cashews - soaked cashews are the base of this creamy sauce. While the cashews I recommend are unsalted and roasted, you can also use raw or salted cashews. The key is to soak the cashews overnight, or for at least 4-8 hours. This allows them to soften and blend into a smooth and creamy sauce!
- Sun dried tomatoes in oil - do not drain the oil, we'll use it in the sauce!
- Water - the amount of water will depend on how thick you want the sauce. More on that later!
- Lemon juice - preferably fresh squeezed!
- Garlic cloves
- Kosher salt - sea salt or table salt will also work, kosher salt is simply my preference in this recipe.
- Black pepper
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Blender or food processor - I use a NutriBullet high speed blender to make all of my cashew sauces. It works perfect to blend the nuts into a creamy sauce!
Step by step instructions
- Soak ½ cup of cashews in a bowl covered in water for 8-10 hours.
- Note: Check out my tips and tricks below in case you forget this step and need to soak the cashews in 20 minutes!
- Drain the cashews from the water and add them to a blender or food processor.
- Add the jar of sun dried tomatoes with the oil.
- Add water, lemon juice, garlic cloves, salt, pepper and extra-virgin olive oil.
- Blend until smooth and creamy.
If using the sauce as a spread, dip or sauce, add ¾ cup water. If you want a thinner sauce to use as a salad dressing, add an additional 2-4 tablespoons water, until you reach the desired consistency.
Tips, tricks and frequently asked questions
- Why do you need to soak cashews? The soaking process is used to soften the cashews. Once the cashews are softened, then blended, this is what creates the ultra-creamy sauce!
- In a hurry? Here's how you can soak cashews in 20 minutes! Add the cashews to a small pot, cover the cashews with water. Place on the stove and bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove the pot from the heat and cover. Wait 15 minutes, then remove the lid from the pot and drain the cashews.
- How much sauce does this recipe make? This recipe makes 12 ounces, or 1 ½ cups of sauce.
- How long will the sauce last in the refrigerator? The sauce will stay good in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
- Can you freeze the sauce? Yes, this sauce can be frozen for up to 6 months. I recommend freezing the sauce in ice cube trays or small salad dressing containers. This way, you can only defrost the amount needed. To defrost the sauce, simply place it in the refrigerator for 12-24 hours. After this time, give it a good shake or whisk to refresh and combine the ingredients.
Ways to use the sauce
- As a bowl topper - this is my favorite way to use the sauce. (No surprise there!) It’s seriously delicious drizzled over any of these bowls.
- Drizzled over a salad - try it on top of this Greek Cauliflower Rice Salad!
- As a salad dressing - add a little extra water to thin out the sauce and make an incredibly creamy salad dressing, perfect for tossing with your favorite green or Greek salad!
- With roasted or grilled veggies - any roasted or grilled vegetables are even better when drizzled, dunked or dipped into this flavorful sun dried tomato sauce!
- As a dip for fresh vegetables - ditch the ranch dressing and instead dip your carrots, celery and peppers into this creamy sun dried tomato sauce! It's also great with crackers or pita chips!
- Toss it with noodles - toss the sauce with your favorite pasta noodles or zoodles!
- Dunk your meatballs in it - allow me to introduce you to a delicious plant-based appetizer idea! Incredibly juicy Vegan Meatballs dipped in this sun dried tomato sauce. Truly a match made in plant-based heaven!
- As a sandwich spread - ditch the mayo and spread this healthy, vegan sauce on your favorite sandwich, wrap or in this Grilled Vegetable Italian Panini.
More vegan sauces & salad dressings to try
- Creamy Vegan Chipotle Sauce
- Roasted Garlic Cashew Cream Sauce
- Healthy Thai Peanut Sauce
- Poblano Cashew Ranch Dressing
Sun Dried Tomato Sauce
- ½ cup roasted, unsalted cashews soaked 8-10 hours
- 7 ounces sun dried tomatoes in oil do not drain!!
- ¾ cup water
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Add all of the ingredients to a high-powered blender.
- Blend until smooth and creamy.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
- If using the sauce as a salad dressing, add an additional 2-4 tablespoons of water, until you reach the desired consistency.
- If you forgot to soak the cashews, here's a short-cut for soaking them in 20 minutes. Add the cashews to a small pot, cover the cashews with water. Place on the stove and bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove the pot from the heat and cover. Wait 15 minutes, then remove the lid from the pot and drain the cashews.
- This recipe makes 12 ounces of sauce. The nutritional information provided is for one ounce of sauce.
- The sauce will stay good in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
- You can also freeze the sauce for up to 6 months. I recommend freezing the sauce in ice cube trays or small salad dressing containers. This way, you can only defrost the amount needed. To defrost the sauce, simply place it in the refrigerator for 12-24 hours. After this time, give it a good shake or whisk to refresh and combine the ingredients.