I’m always on the look out for easy and quick meals that taste amazing. Life gets busy and we don’t always have a lot time to spend in the kitchen. One of my favourite simple meals is pesto pasta. I ate this frequently throughout my university degree because it always tastes like a gourmet meal but takes next to no time to make.
Pesto can be made in hundreds of ways but today I’m sharing a classic version that uses basil, garlic, lemon, olive oil and pine nuts. This recipe taste exactly like a store-bought pesto, except there’s no cheese in it at all!
Start by cooking the pasta according to package directions; strain away the water and return the pasta to the pot. This pesto recipe make enough sauce for 4 cups of dry pasta.
Prepare any veggies you would like to add to the dish. Today, I’ve just diced a tomato. Some other great options are zucchini, broccoli, or peas; use whatever you like!
Next you will want to toast the pine nuts. Place them into a non-stick pan over medium heat for 5-8 minutes, tossing them around frequently. Toast until they are golden brown and fragrant. The pine nuts can easily burn so keep a close eye on them while you do this.
To make the pesto, simple place all the ingredients except the olive oil into a food processor. I like to crush the garlic before putting it in the food processor, just to make sure I don’t end up with any large garlic chunks when I’m eating. Turn the processor on and drizzle in the olive oil until the pesto comes together.
Toss the pesto with the cooked pasta and your choice of veggies (optional). Serve, and enjoy!
- 2 C packed fresh basil leaves
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed (or finely minced)
- ¼ C toasted pine nuts
- 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- ¼ tsp salt (plus more to taste if needed)
- 1 C spinach
- ⅓ C extra virgin olive oil
- Cook pasta according to package directions. This will make enough pesto for 4 C dry pasta.
- Prepare any vegetables you may want to add to the dish.
- Toast the pine nuts and crush the garlic.
- Place all ingredients, except for the olive oil, into a food processor. Turn the processor on and slowly drizzle in the olive oil until the mixture is at the desired consistency.
- Toss with cooked pasta and your choice of vegetable (optional).