Pesto Pasta Salad Recipe – Cookie and Kate






pesto pasta salad recipe

This pesto pasta salad is destined in your subsequent gathering. Or at the least, that’s what I hope! This recipe is mild and so recent. It’s excellent for events, picnics and weeknight dinners, from spring by means of fall. Leftovers hold properly for lunch, too.

Pesto and pasta are the celebs of this present, naturally. To make it a pasta salad, I added a pint of cherry tomatoes, a couple of handfuls of recent arugula, and a few cheese. I like salty feta on this recipe, although mozzarella and Parmesan are additionally nice.

pesto pasta salad ingredients

This pasta salad recipe contains home made pesto made with a couple of little twists. As a substitute of pine nuts, I opted for extra inexpensive pepitas (inexperienced pumpkin seeds). You need to use pine nuts if you happen to’d relatively—and even walnuts or pecans.

I like to make use of half recent basil and half recent parsley, which tastes much more fascinating and in addition cuts down on prices (shopping for numerous recent basil could be costly). You possibly can actually use all basil when you’ve got an abundance rising in your backyard. I additionally add some recent lemon juice to brighten up the dish. Give it a attempt!

pesto process and tomatoes

Pesto Pasta Salad Ideas

The recipe under is straightforward and simple, however listed below are some notes earlier than you get began.

  1. Reserve some pasta cooking water. We’ll want as much as 1/2 cup of the starchy pasta cooking water to assist convey this sauce collectively. To assist me keep in mind, I all the time place a heat-proof glass liquid measuring cup within the sink subsequent to the colander.
  2. Rinse the pasta below cool water instantly after cooking. Rinsing the pasta reduces the quantity of starch on the floor of the noodles, in order that they don’t clump collectively earlier than you’ve got an opportunity to toss them in pesto sauce.
  3. To make this dish gluten free, merely substitute your favourite gluten-free noodles. A sturdy corn-and-quinoa mix often works properly in this sort of dish.
  4. To make it vegan, merely don’t add cheese. To make up for the flavour and substance that cheese supplies, attempt including olives and/or chickpeas to the dish.
  5. Serve promptly. This pasta salad is finest served inside a couple of hours, however leftovers will hold comparatively properly within the fridge, lined, for as much as 4 days. The one draw back is that the arugula will wilt a bit with time.

how to make pesto pasta salad

Watch Easy methods to Make Pesto Pasta Salad

pesto pasta salad in serving bowl

Extra Contemporary Pasta Dishes

When you get pleasure from this pesto pasta salad, attempt these recipes subsequent:

Please let me understand how your recipe seems within the feedback! I like listening to from you.

pasta salad with pesto


Pesto Pasta Salad

  • Writer: Cookie and Kate
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook dinner Time: 10 minutes
  • Whole Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings 1x
  • Class: Salad
  • Technique: By hand
  • Delicacies: Italian
  • Weight-reduction plan: Vegetarian

4.8 from 33 opinions

This pesto pasta salad recipe is bursting with recent taste. It’s mild, wholesome and straightforward to make. Good for picnics and potlucks! Recipe yields 6 to eight aspect servings.



  • 1 pound entire grain pasta (fusilli, rotini, penne or farfalle)
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • 3 handfuls child arugula or spinach
  • Non-compulsory cheese: ½ cup or extra crumbled feta cheese, little mozzarella balls or grated Parmesan
  • Non-compulsory additions: ½ cup thinly sliced Kalamata olives and/or 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained (or 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas)
  • Freshly floor black pepper


  • ½ cup pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds)*
  • ½ cup packed recent basil leaves
  • ½ cup packed recent flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • ¼ cup lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
  • 1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
  • ½ teaspoon high-quality salt
  • ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil


  1. Convey a big pot of salted water to boil for the pasta. Cook dinner the pasta till al dente in line with the bundle instructions. Earlier than draining, reserve about ½ cup pasta cooking water, then drain and instantly rinse the pasta below cool water to stop the noodles from sticking collectively. Switch the pasta to a big serving bowl.
  2. In the meantime, to organize the pesto: In a small skillet, toast the pepitas over medium warmth, stirring typically, till they’re aromatic and making little popping noises, about 4 to five minutes. Pour half of the pepitas right into a bowl for later (we’ll use them as garnish).
  3. Pour the remaining pepitas right into a meals processor. Add the basil, parsley, lemon juice, garlic and salt. Course of whereas slowly drizzling within the olive oil, stopping to scrape down the edges as needed, till the pepitas have damaged all the way down to create a reasonably easy sauce.
  4. To assemble the pasta salad, pour all the pesto over the pasta and toss till the pasta is evenly and evenly coated, including a tiny splash of reserved pasta cooking water if essential to skinny it out. Then add the cherry tomatoes, arugula, remaining toasted pepitas, and any non-compulsory add-ins (cheese, olives and/or chickpeas).
  5. Toss once more to mix, then season to style with pepper. If the pasta wants extra taste, add salt, to style, or a splash of lemon juice. If the flavors are too daring, let it relaxation for a couple of minutes, and add a little bit splash of olive oil if essential to tone down the remaining. This recipe will hold properly, lined and refrigerated, for as much as 4 days.


Recipe tailored from Vegan Goodness by Jessica Prescott.
*Change it up: You need to use pine nuts, walnuts or almonds within the pesto as a substitute of pepitas (though the dish will not be nut-free, if that’s related to you).
Make it gluten free: Use your favourite gluten-free pasta.
Make it dairy free/vegan: Simply don’t add any cheese!

▸ Diet Info

The knowledge proven is an estimate offered by a web based vitamin calculator. It shouldn’t be thought of an alternative choice to an expert nutritionist’s recommendation. See our full vitamin disclosure right here.

Did you make this recipe?

Share this


Win A Copy of Preserved: Condiments – Leite’s Culinaria

Fill within the giveaway info, and also you’ll be entered to win a duplicate of Preserved: Condiments by Darra Goldstein, Cortney Burns, Richard Martin (Scribner, 2023).  (ARV...

We’re Recapping Chilled 100 ELEVATE: Past the Bar: Get from Right here to There

Past the Bar: Get from Right here to There was an ELEVATE seminar offered by three trade consultants: Greg Cohen, previously from...

Recent articles

More like this