Banza Chickpea based pasta (and now rice) has completely transformed the pasta world since launching in 2014. Banza is the number one selling pasta brand at Target and Whole Foods (per Banza.com) and it’s with no surprise as this high protein chickpea based pasta comes in many shapes and sizes and has raving (and returning fans). If you have used Banza pasta before or if you’re new to it, we wanted to share our eight favorite Banza Chickpea based pasta recipes below along with answering a few questions along the way that we get asked often here at the Vegan’s Pantry.
Is Banza Vegan?
Yes, the Banza pasta in the rotini, spaghetti, and penne shapes is vegan. The Banza rice vartieties in the Ginger Scallion, Chipotle Tomato, Garlic Olive Oil, and the original are also all vegan. However, the Banza Mac and Cheese is made with traditional milk and cheese products and is not vegan. So, you could make your own vegan mac and cheese with the rotini or penne shapes but the boxed Banza mac and cheese is not vegan. Again, there are still endless options and check out the Banza Chickpea Pasta Recipes below for ideas!
Is Banza Healthy?
Yes! Banza Chickpea pasta has only four plant-based vegan ingredients – chickpeas, tapioca, pea protein, and xanthan gum. These four simple ingredients make the pasta high in protein (23 grams of protein per serving) and fiber (8 grams of fiber per serving). This is a great alternative to pasta as it is more nutritionally dense but it also holds up in texture better than veggie pastas. So that means that your kids and family won’t know they are eating pasta made from garbanzo beans but you will and it’ll be a glorious feeling! Find healthier versions to all of your pasta favorites with Banza Chickpea pasta that’s vegan, gluten-free, healthy, and flying off the shelves HERE.
8 Vegan Banza Chickpea Pasta Recipes
8. TAHINI LINGUINE ALFREDO
- 1 box Banza Linguine
- ¼ cup tahini
- ¼ cup almond milk
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast (or 2 tbsp Parm, if you prefer cheese)
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Juice of 1 lemon
- chopped parsley for garnish, if desired
- Cook Banza according to package directions, in generously-salted water.
- Meanwhile, mix together ingredients for tahini-alfredo sauce. Strain pasta, reserving a ½ cup of pasta cooking water.
- Add linguine to skillet with the tahini sauce, warm over low and toss well using pasta water to thin the sauce as needed.
- Serve topped with chopped parsley.
7. ‘CREAMY’ AVOCADO PESTO
- 1 box Banza Rigatoni
- 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
- 1/2 large ripe avocado
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons water, plus more if necessary
- sea salt, to taste
- Cook the rigatoni according to package instructions. Strain and rinse noodles until cool.
- Add basil, avocado, garlic, pine nuts and lemon juice to a food processor and pulse for 20 seconds or until pesto is chopped. Add in water and process again until completely smooth. You may need to add more water to get it to a saucy consistency. Transfer to a bowl and add drained pasta.
- Top with fresh basil leaves.
6. ROTINI PESTO PASTA SALAD
- 1 box Banza rotini
- 3 ounces fresh basil leaves (about 2 ½ packed cups)
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- ½ teaspoon salt, divided
- ½ cup pine nuts, divided
- ¾ cup Sir Kensington۪s Fabanaise, or mayonnaise
- ¾ cup fresh tomatoes
- 2 cups arugula
- Cook Banza according to instructions on the package. Drain, rinse and set aside in a large bowl.
- In the bottom of a food processor, add basil, garlic, lemon juice, lemon zest, ¼ teaspoon salt, and 1 tablespoon pine nuts. Pulse until pureed. If needed, scrape down the sides of the mixer with a spatula. Add in fabanaise or mayo, and process until combined. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add pesto to the pasta. Toss until completely coated. Add in remaining salt, pine nuts, tomatoes and arugula. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
5. CREAMY TOMATO, KALE & BASIL PENNE
- 1 box Banza Penne
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup almond or other nut milk
- 2 cups shredded kale
- 1 handful fresh basil
- In a large pan or skillet with high sides, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and a generous pinch of salt and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until translucent and starting to soften. Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 more minutes.
- Add crushed tomatoes, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, and another pinch of salt and bring the heat down to medium-low. Cook for 15 minutes, stirring once or twice. Stir in the cashew milk, then remove from heat and let cool for 5 minutes.
- At this stage you can leave it a little chunky as is, or blend which makes for a creamier sauce. Reserve half the sauce for another time in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for 3 months.
- Cook pasta in heavily salted water according to the package instructions. While the pasta is cooking, reheat sauce over medium-low and add shredded kale until it wilts, about 3-4 minutes.
- Once pasta is cooked through, toss with the sauce and top with fresh basil leaves and extra chili flakes to serve. Enjoy immediately.
4. BUTTERNUT SQUASH ALFREDO
- 1 package Banza rotini
- 2 tsp. olive oil
- 2 cups cubed butternut squash
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¾ tsp. salt, divided
- ½ cup plain almond milk
- ¼ cup vegetable stock (plus more if needed)
- 1 cup chopped kale
- 4 Tlbs. Nutritional yeast seasoning
- Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Season liberally with salt. Cook pasta according to package directions.
- Heat a large skillet to a medium heat. Add oil. When oil is hot, add squash, garlic, and ½ tsp. salt. Saut̩ for 2-3 minutes. Add almond milk. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer until squash is soft, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a blender and puree.
- Add squash mixture back to the pan along with cooked pasta, remaining salt, and kale. Turn the heat on medium-low and cook until kale is wilted, about 1-2 minutes.
- Add nutritional yeast, toss. If needed, add in more vegetable stock to loosen sauce up. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
3. MISO PESTO CAVATAPPI
- 1 box Banza Cavatappi
- 4 cups kale
- 2 cups cilantro leaves with tender stems
- ½ pine nuts, toasted
- 1 Tbsp. white miso
- 1 garlic clove
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
- Kosher salt
- Cook Cavatappi according to package instructions. Rinse, drain, and reserve while you make the pesto.
- Combine pine nuts, miso, garlic in a high speed blender. Pulse to combine then add kale and cilantro along with the olive oil and lemon juice. Pulse until smooth, then add salt to taste.
- Mix pesto with the Cavatappi and serve garnished with toasted pine nuts.
2. ROASTED RED PEPPER PASTA
- 1 box Banza Penne
- 2 red bell peppers
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 cup diced shallots
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed and chopped
- 1/2 cup Ripple Half & Half
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, increase to 1/2 tsp if you like more spice
- 2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
- Heat oven to 500°F. Place whole peppers on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until charred, rotating to get all of the skin black and crispy (about 10 – 15 minutes). Remove from oven and cover in foil for 10 minutes to steam. Remove foil, and peel away charred skin, seeds, and stems.
- Cook penne according to instructions on the package, drain and set aside.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and sauté shallot and garlic in 2-3 tbsp of olive oil until golden brown and fragrant. Remove from heat.
- Transfer shallot, garlic, roasted peppers, Ripple Half & Half, red pepper flakes, nutritional yeast and cornstarch to a blender and process until smooth. Add salt & pepper to taste. Add water as needed to thin out the sauce.
- Transfer pasta to skillet used to sauté the onion and garlic. Add sauce and toss to coat.
- Top with fresh parsley and enjoy.
1. VEGAN MAC & CHEESE
- 1 box Banza Elbows or Shells
- 1 Medium Russet Potato, peeled and diced
- 1 Medium Carrot, chopped into coins
- 1/3 cup Cashew Pieces (If you have a nut allergy, the cashews can be replaced with 1/4 cup coconut cream or 1/4 cup of vegan cream cheese)
- 2 tbsp Nutritional Yeast
- 1 tbsp Mellow Miso Paste
- 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
- 1/4 tsp Paprika
- 1/3 cup Water
- Salt, to taste
- Juice of 1/2 a Lemon
- Place the peeled and diced potato and chopped carrots in a medium pot and fill with water. Bring to a boil, and boil for 7 minutes. Add the cashews to the pot of boiling water and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, until the carrot pieces can be easily pierced with a fork.
- Drain the contents of the pot and set aside. Refill the pot with water, add a pinch of salt, and bring to a boil. Pour the box of Banza Elbows into the pot, and cook according to package instructions.
- In the meantime, combine the drained potatoes, carrots, and cashews with the remaining ingredients in a high-speed blender. Process until smooth, then add salt to taste.
- Drain and rinse the Elbows, then return to the pot over low heat. Pour the “cheese” sauce and lemon juice over the pasta, then stir to combine. Once the Mac & Cheese is heated to your liking, serve and enjoy.
All recipes are from eatbanza.com where you can find more information about their products. These were our favorites we’ve gone through so far in the last few months after falling head over heals in love with Banza. Hope you enjoy this healthy, vegan, high-protein, gluten-free pasta as much as we do. Find Banza Chickpea pasta HERE.