By Wendy Gabbe Day, Guest Contributor
Raising Vegan Kids—Got Beans?
My kids sure love pasta! There are so many different shapes, textures, and whole-grain flours to choose from these days. And now there’s even pasta made from beans and lentils!
My kids also love smooth and creamy pasta sauce, like the recipe I’ve shared below. No one would ever guess it’s packed with beans and sweet potatoes! Beans are loaded with fiber, protein, complex carbs, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals—and best of all, they are easy to sneak into kids’ favorite dishes!
You can replace some or all of the beans with an equal amount of cashews to make an even richer, creamier sauce. It’s also fun to steam and finely chop kale or broccoli and mix it in with the pasta.
Bean Pasta Sauce
Serves about 4-6.
- 12 oz. pasta—brown rice, quinoa, corn, etc.
- 1 cup sweet potatoes—peeled and steamed in chunks
- 1 cup beans—navy, kidney, garbanzo, etc.
- 12 oz. pasta sauce
- water as needed—or smooth blending
- salt to taste
- oil (flax, hemp, olive, coconut, etc.)
- nutritional yeast (optional)
- vegan cheese (optional)
- Cook pasta according to instructions.
- Chop a small sweet potato (any variety) into similar-sized chunks. Place in a steamer basket and steam until a fork easily pierces the potatoes.
- Blend sweet potatoes, beans, and pasta sauce until smooth. Add a little water if needed to allow blender to blend smoothly. Start with a few tablespoons and slowly increase.
- Mix in with pasta and top with oil (flax, hemp, olive, coconut, etc.), nutritional yeast, or vegan cheese.
In case you missed it, here’s our super yummy bean-packed Cookie Dough Pudding.