Spaghetti Carbonara with Coconut “Bacon” and Garlic Rapini

Spaghetti Carbonara

with Coconut “Bacon” and Garlic Rapini


Traditional carbonara can be a heavy meal, a creamy sauce paired with pasta that’s often light on the vegetables. In this dish we switch things up, slightly bitter rapini, or broccoli rabe, is a counterbalance to the creamy cashew sauce which is lightened with fresh lemon juice. Coconut bacon adds a crunch, just watch it in the oven, it will only need a few minutes to get toasty.

Comfort Foods Spring Recipes Winter Recipes Gluten-Free High-Protein Pasta Beans/Legumes Leafy Greens Nuts Dinner Italian
35 min


  1. ⅓ cup cashews
  2. 1 tbsp white miso paste
  3. 2 tsp maple syrup
  4. ¼ tsp liquid smoke
  5. ½ cup coconut chips
  6. 1 shallot
  7. 2 garlic cloves
  8. 4 oz rapini
  9. 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  10. 1 lemon
  11. 1 box Banza spaghetti
  12. ¼ cup green peas
  13. Parchment paper
  14. 2 tsp olive oil*
  15. 1 tsp vegetable oil*
  16. *Not included
  17. **Allergens: Tree Nuts, Soy


  • Large pot
  • Baking sheet
  • Blender
  • Large skillet


Set the stage

Rinse and dry the produce. Place a large pot of salted water onto boil for the pasta. Place the cashews in a medium bowl and add 2 cups hot tap water. Preheat oven to 300°F. In a medium bowl, mix the white miso paste and maple syrup into a paste. Add the liquid smoke, a pinch of black pepper, and 1 tsp olive oil to the miso mixture, and stir.

Make the “bacon”

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Gently fold the coconut chips into the miso mixture, tossing until completely coated. Spread the coconut evenly onto the lined baking sheet and bake until golden brown, about 5 to 7 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes to avoid sticking. Set coconut bacon aside to cool.

Cook the aromatics

Peel and roughly chop the shallot. Peel and mince the garlic. Place a large skillet over medium-high heat with 1 tsp vegetable oil. Add the shallot and half of the garlic. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds, then transfer to a blender.

Carbonara sauce

Add ⅔ cup of the soaking water from the cashews to a blender. Drain the cashews and add them to the blender along with the nutritional yeast and the juice from the lemon. Blend sauce until it is smooth and creamy. Season carbonara sauce with ¼ tsp salt and a pinch of pepper.

Cook the pasta

Add the Banza spaghetti to the boiling water, stir, and cook until al dente, about 5 to 7 minutes. Drain, shake off excess water, and return pasta to the large pot. Add the peas and carbonara sauce, and bring to a simmer over low heat. Continue to simmer spaghetti until everything is warmed through. Trim 1 inch of stem off the rapini.

Cook the rapini and serve

Return the large skillet to medium-high heat and add 1 tsp olive oil. Once hot, add rapini and remaining garlic. Cook, tossing frequently, until bright green and tender, about 2 minutes. Add ¼ cup water and steam for a minute; season with salt and pepper. To serve, divide spaghetti carbonara and garlic rapini between large bowls. Sprinkle with coconut “bacon” and a pinch of black pepper.