Easy Pesto Pasta

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This easy pesto pasta is so incredibly simple and quick to make, yet it’s loaded with a delicious explosion of flavors thanks to the walnut pesto. It tastes like spring and summer wrapped into one. The fragrant fresh basil leaves are the true star of this dish. And in the supporting roles, we have the zesty lemon juice, and fragrant garlic.

These last few weeks have been so hectic, that I’ve turned my focus to easy, simple to make recipes that are meal prep friendly. Time seems to fly by, and I don’t get half of the stuff on my to-do list done – and that’s resulted in some stressed last minute dinner choices (i.e. Pizza and takeaway). It’s not something I like to resort to, so I made the resolution to focus on easy recipes that I can make in advance that are delicious and healthy.

Cooking hacks

If you feel like making your own pesto is just too much work, I’ve got you covered. You can always use a ready made pesto from the grocery store. I’ve done it at times when I just couldn’t be bothered to break out my food processor, and the recipe still turns out fragrant, delicious and loaded with flavors.

What’s great about this recipe:

  • Super simple and quick to make
  • Vegetarian and can easily be vegan (just use vegan cheese)
  • Healthy and meal prep friendly
  • Comforting and loaded with flavors
  • A crowdpleaser – kids and adults love it

Easy Pesto Pasta Meal Prep

This Easy Pasta Pesto recipe works incredibly well for meal prepping. I like to make it ready, pour it into a large baking pan and freeze it as soon as it’s cooled. That way I can just take it out of the freezer (grate some cheese over it if I feel like it) and bake it in the oven at 400F for 25-30 minutes. It’s super simple and the taste is mindblowing. Something magical seems to happen to pasta when you reheat it. It intensifies the flavors of the pesto, and the pasta becomes crispy at the edges and oh so delicious.
It’s comfort food in a bowl, and it takes almost no effort.

How is this Easy Pesto Pasta made? It’s super simple. Just:

Instructions

  • Cook the pasta as instructed on the package.
  • While the pasta cooks pulse the walnuts with the rest of the pesto ingredients in a food processor.
  • Next, rinse the zucchinis and dice them. Heat a tablespoon olive oil in a skillet and add the diced zucchinis. Cook them at medium high heat and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Let the zucchinis cook until they are tender and start to turn golden at the edges, before setting aside.
  • Once the pasta has cooked, drain the water and leave the pasta in the pot. Add the pesto and cooked zucchinis and mix everything together.
  • Plate up the pasta and serve with a drizzle of parmesan cheese (or vegan cheese) and a few fresh basil leaves and enjoy.

Easy Pesto Pasta

This easy pesto pasta is so incredibly simple and quick to make, yet it’s loaded with a delicious explosion of flavors thanks to the walnut pesto. It tastes like spring and summer wrapped into one. The fragrant fresh basil leaves are the true star of this dish. And in the supporting roles, we have the zesty lemon juice, and fragrant garlic.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Italian
Keyword dinner, vegan
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author Simone – Munchyesta.com

Ingredients

  • 5 cups Pasta Penne
  • 3 Zucchinis Diced

Walnut Pesto

  • 1 cup Walnuts
  • cups Fresh Basil Leaves Tightly Packed
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Juice from 1 Lemon
  • ½ cup Parmesan Cheese or vegan cheese

Topping (optional)

  • ½ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese or vegan cheese
  • Chopped Fresh Basil

Instructions

  • Cook the pasta as instructed on the package.
  • While the pasta cooks pulse the walnuts with the rest of the pesto ingredients in a food processor.
  • Next, rinse the zucchinis and dice them. Heat a tablespoon olive oil in a skillet and add the diced zucchinis. Cook them at medium high heat and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Let the zucchinis cook until they are tender and start to turn golden at the edges, before setting aside.
  • Once the pasta has cooked, drain the water and leave the pasta in the pot. Add the pesto and cooked zucchinis and mix everything together.
  • Plate up the pasta and serve with a drizzle of parmesan cheese (or vegan cheese) and a few fresh basil leaves and enjoy.

If you’re looking for more easy and tasty pasta recipes, try my Easy vegan Creamy Pasta Alfredo or my Spaghetti with Mushroom bolognese

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