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Vegan Cacio e Pepe

Serves 4
30 Minutes

Kosher salt
⅓ cup nutritional yeast
¼ cup cashew butter
2 tablespoons white miso paste
1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
16 ounces dried spaghetti
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
½ lemon, squeezed as needed (optional)


Step 1
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high. (Go easy on the salt here, since the miso paste added in Step 4 is high in salt.) Add the nutritional yeast, cashew butter and miso to a small bowl and stir into a thick paste. Crush the peppercorns using the flat side of a knife. (Alternatively, you can roughly chop them, or use a pepper grinder set to a coarse setting.)

Step 2
Add the pasta to the boiling water, reduce the temperature to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, about 2 minutes before al dente according to package instructions. Reserve 2½ cups pasta cooking water, then drain the pasta.

Step 3
Add ¼ cup olive oil to the empty pot and heat over medium. Add about two-thirds of the crushed black peppercorns and toast, stirring frequently, until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes.

Step 4
Add the miso mixture, and stir, then whisk in 1¾ cups reserved pasta water until sauce is smooth. Add the pasta to the sauce and cook over medium-high, tossing it constantly and vigorously with tongs, until the sauce is glossy and the pasta is fully al dente, 1 to 2 minutes. Add an extra splash of reserved pasta water to keep the sauce glossy, if needed.

Step 5
Divide among bowls. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with remaining crushed pepper and serve immediately.