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Here's a healthy and hearty sweet potato noodle recipe that's perfect for weeknights. It's spiralized sweet potatoes, blistered cherry tomatoes, and baby spinach tossed in a spicy cilantro cashew cream sauce. This easy-to-make vegan meal is ready in just 20 minutes!
These easy, quick-cooking sweet potato noodles with cashew cream sauce are a healthy meal any night of the week. They're saucy, hearty, and really delicious!
If this is your first time making sweet potato noodles, you're in for a treat. They're colorful, flavorful, and filling without being heavy. You can cover them in your favorite sauce and pretend like it's pasta while benefiting from all the added nutrients.
This is a relatively simple dish, so the Asian-inspired cashew cream sauce adds an important element. It's so creamy that people are often surprised there's no dairy in it!
These sweet potato noodles are perfect for those times when you're craving lots of veggies but don't feel like a salad. It's a vibrant, low-stress, gluten-free meal that kids love, too!
Sweet potato noodle ingredients
Here's everything you need for the Asian-inspired sriracha cilantro cashew sauce:
- Raw cashews – it's important to use raw unsalted cashews when making cashew sauce. If you have a high-speed blender, you don't need to soak them. That said, if you've got the time, soaking the cashews in hot water for 30 minutes will result in a silky smooth sauce.
- Cilantro – cilantro adds a fresh pop of flavor and gives this sauce its light green color. You can swap it for parsley if you're not a cilantro fan.
- Nutritional yeast – nutritional yeast is a savory food seasoning with a cheese-like taste. It's a versatile vegan ingredient most commonly used in sauces. If it's not an ingredient you keep in your pantry, you can swap it for grated parmesan cheese.
- Sriracha – sriracha gives this sauce flavor and a kick of heat. Feel free to omit it for a non-spicy version.
- Rice vinegar – rice vinegar is less acidic than most vinegar and has a mild, slightly sweet Asian flavor.
- Soy sauce – soy sauce is notorious for its umami flavor, giving this sauce some salty complexity and a hint of sweetness. You can use tamari, coconut aminos, or a gluten-free soy sauce instead if needed.
- Sea salt – sea salt works as a flavor enhancer to bring out all the wonderful flavors.
Here's what you need for the sweet potato noodles:
- Olive oil – extra-virgin olive oil is what we use for sautéing the cherry tomatoes.
- Cherry tomatoes – we use cherry tomatoes but you can also use grape tomatoes or another small tomato variety.
- Sweet potatoes – sweet potatoes make delicious, hearty noodles. You can use a julienne peeler if that's what you've got on hand but a real spiralizer like this one works wonders with firmer vegetables to give you long curly noodles. You can also look for sweet potato noodles in bags in the produce section of your grocery store.
- Spinach leaves – baby spinach leaves are tender and wilt quickly which is why we like them for this recipe. Feel free to use other greens like kale or chard as well.
- Toasted cashews and cilantro – a few chopped toasted cashews and fresh cilantro, for serving.
You'll also need a julienne peeler or a spiralizer for the sweet potato noodles, and a high-speed blender for the sauce.
How to cook sweet potato noodles
This sweet potato noodle recipe is the perfect quick and healthy weeknight dinner. Here's how to make it in a few easy steps:
- Add all the sauce ingredients to your blender and blend until smooth.
- Sauté the cherry tomatoes in a skillet until they start to blister.
- Add the sweet potato noodles and cook until crisp-tender (similar to cooking regular noodles al-dente, you don't want them to be mushy).
- Toss in the spinach until it wilts, followed by the cashew cream sauce. Stir everything together and top with cashews and cilantro. Enjoy!
Tips for making sweet potato noodles
If you were wondering how to make sweet potato noodles that are long and spiral-y, here are a few helpful tips:
- Get yourself a real spiralizer like this one. It works well for all sorts of vegetables from soft vegetables like zucchini to firmer vegetables like beets, butternut squash, and sweet potatoes. A julienne peeler still works in a pinch but it requires more effort and the noodles will be straight and often short.
- You don't need to boil the sweet potato noodles, just sauté them for a few minutes in a non-stick pan. A non-stick pan is important because they will stick like crazy to a traditional pan.
- Be careful not to overcook the noodles. You want them to be tender-crisp, but not soft and mushy.
- Toss them lightly with tongs to mix with the sauce, being careful not to break them.
What to serve with sweet potato noodles
These sweet potato noodles with cashew cream sauce are a complete vegan meal that's perfect for busy weeknights. But they also work well as a hearty Asian-inspired side dish with a variety of mains like our Thai marinated chicken or slow baked Asian salmon.
They're a great dish for dinner parties, picnics, or potlucks when you know there will be some vegan or gluten-free eaters attending!
Are sweet potato noodles healthy?
In general yes, sweet potato noodles are healthy! This sweet potato noodle recipe is made with just fresh vegetables and a dairy-free cashew cream sauce which gives it protein and healthy fat.
Where can I buy sweet potato noodles?
You can often find packaged sweet potato noodles in the produce aisle at the grocery store. Just avoid the frozen ones because they'll become mushy. Also make sure you're not buying sweet potato pasta because although it will work, it's an entirely different ingredient.
How long do leftover sweet potato noodles last in the fridge?
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Can I use regular pasta noodles instead?
Sure! It will change the overall feel of this veggie recipe but regular noodles will also taste great in the cashew cream sauce.
Can I make the cashew cream sauce ahead of time?
Definitely! To save time, make the sauce and store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. It will thicken slightly in the fridge but you can loosen it up with a few tablespoons of warm water.
Sriracha Cilantro Cashew Sauce
- 1 ½ cups raw cashews (see notes)
- ¼ cup cilantro (packed)
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast (can su parmesan cheese)
- 1 tablespoon Sriracha
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar (or sub apple cider vinegar)
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce (gluten-free if needed)
- Sea salt (to taste)
Sweet Potato Noodles
- 2 tablespoons olive oil (divided)
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes
- 4 medium sweet potatoes (about 2 lb total spiralized into noodles (this is the spiralizer we have))
- 8 ounces spinach leaves
- Toasted cashews and cilantro (to serve)
- Place the cashew cream sauce ingredients in a blender, along with 1 ½ cups of water, and blend on high until it is very smooth.1 ½ cups raw cashews, ¼ cup cilantro, 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast, 1 tablespoon Sriracha, 1 tablespoon rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, Sea salt
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the cherry tomatoes and cook for about 3 minutes, or until they start to blister. Remove them from the pan.2 cups cherry tomatoes
- Add the remaining tablespoon of oil and the sweet potato noodles to the pan and toss well. Cook the noodles, tossing them with tongs several times, for 8-10 minutes, until they are crisp-tender.4 medium sweet potatoes, 8 ounces spinach leaves
- Add the spinach to the pan and let it wilt. Stir the cream sauce through the noodles and top with some toasted cashews and cilantro.Toasted cashews and cilantro
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.