Vegan Avocado Pasta with Blackened Vegetables


This recipe is bright, creamy, salty, and slightly burned and crunchy. It's a delightful sensory experience, and also kind-of healthy, if you believe in that sort of thing! Also, this recipe would make a great paleo dinner with some spiraled veggie pasta.

Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 10 mins
8 servings



  • 2 heads broccoli, cut into 1-inch florets

  • 2 red bell peppers, cut into 1/2-inch chunks

  • 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced into rings, rings separated

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • 2 limes, juiced

  • ½ teaspoon salt


  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 2 pounds penne pasta


  • 4 avocados - peeled, pitted, and chopped

  • 2 limes, juiced

  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled

  • ½ teaspoon salt, or more to taste

  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro (Optional)


  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved (Optional)

  • 4 fresh cilantro stems, or to taste (Optional)

  • 1 pinch sea salt to taste (Optional)

  • freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).

  2. Combine broccoli, red bell peppers, and yellow onion in a large bowl. Add olive oil, juice of 2 limes, and 1/2 teaspoon salt; toss to coat. Spread vegetables onto a baking sheet.

  3. Roast vegetables, stirring 1 or 2 times, in the preheated oven until edges begin to blacken, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool slightly.

  4. Fill a large pot with water and 1/2 teaspoon salt; bring to a boil. Stir in penne and return to a boil. Cook pasta uncovered, stirring occasionally, until cooked through but still firm to the bite, about 11 minutes; drain.

  5. Blend avocados, juice of 2 limes, garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a food processor or blender until sauce is smooth, scraping down sides as needed. Add 1/2 cup chopped cilantro and pulse until just incorporated.

  6. Gently toss pasta, roasted vegetables, and sauce together in a large bowl. Garnish with cherry tomatoes, cilantro stems, sea salt, and black pepper.

Cook's Notes:

If using a blender for the sauce, you may want to dice the avocados before blending so that the mixture processes more evenly.

Lemon juice can be substituted for the lime juice, if desired. It's not as good, but it's still totally awesome.

Zucchini and mushrooms are both great in this dish, too, just not as pretty as broccoli and red bell peppers.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

675 Calories
23g Fat
106g Carbs
20g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 675
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 23g 29%
Saturated Fat 4g 18%
Sodium 520mg 23%
Total Carbohydrate 106g 38%
Dietary Fiber 15g 53%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 20g
Vitamin C 132mg 658%
Calcium 97mg 7%
Iron 6mg 31%
Potassium 1141mg 24%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.