Pesto Pasta Recipe

Published on June 12th 2022 by Sarah Leadon.
Last updated on March 20th 2024
This recipe, developed through the collective effort of at least six experts, underwent meticulous research and testing for over three months. Learn more about our process in the art and science behind our recipes. This post may contain affiliate links. Read our Disclosure Policy.
Top View of Pesto Pasta

Pesto and pasta are the perfect combinations. Pesto originated in Genoa during the 12th and 13th centuries. The original pesto recipe called for 7 simple ingredients: extra-virgin olive oil, Parmesan cheese, garlic, pine nuts, salt, and pecorino cheese. The pesto adds a rich, salty flavor to the pasta and a nutty, bright, herbaceous flavor. Furthermore, since this pasta is made with rigatoni pasta, the pesto gets trapped in the ridges making sure there is a bit of pesto in every bite. Overall, you can't go wrong with this delicious Pesto Pasta

 

What pasta goes with pesto?

Pesto is best served over more extended types of pasta, such as fusilli or rigatoni. However, you can also serve pesto over bucatini, capellini, spaghetti, or Fettuccine. 

 

Is eating pesto pasta healthy?

Yes, pesto has a lot of fat and calories. However, pesto contains several beneficial compounds. Pesto contains high levels of vitamins, minerals, and monounsaturated fats, which provide the body with healthy compounds that are heart-healthy. 

 

Is it bad to heat pesto?

Pesto should never be heated. Heating the pesto will cause it to darken and ruin the aroma of the herbs in the pesto sauce. It is best to add the pesto to the pasta before serving it. 

 

Why is my pesto so bitter?

The oils in pine nuts, walnuts, and olive oil can spoil the pesto ages. In addition, if you use fresh basil from plants that have already flowered, the basil will have a bitter flavor. 

 

Author: Sarah Leadon
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Time & Serves

Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
Serves
4 persons

Ingredients

  • 1/2 lb. Rigatoni Pasta

     

  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil

     

  • 1 Shallot, minced 

     

  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced

  • 1/2 cup Chicken Broth

     

  • 1 cup Heavy Cream

     

  • 1/2 cup Sun-Dried Tomatoes 

     

  • 1 cup Pesto

     

  • 1 cup Spinach Leaves 

     

  • 3/4 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated

     

  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese, shaved

Instructions

Cook the rigatoni pasta in a saucepan of salted boiling water. Drain the rigatoni pasta in a skillet and set it aside. 

 

To a cast iron skillet, add olive oil and set it over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook them for 1 minute until the shallots are translucent. 

 

Next, add chicken broth and heavy cream. Cook the cream sauce for 10 minutes, stirring periodically until the sauce thickens slightly. 

 

Stir in the rigatoni pasta, pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, spinach, and grated Parmesan cheese. 

 

Place the pesto pasta into a serving dish and garnish it with the shaved Parmesan cheese. 

Sarah Leadon
Author:

Delve into the fusion of food and mood with Sarah. Discover the emotional journey within each recipe. Beyond the kitchen, she's an avid reader and music lover, lost in the rhythms of life.

More posts by Sarah Leadon

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pesto pasta, recipe, salad, how to make, creamy, best, easy

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Sarah Leadon
Author:

Delve into the fusion of food and mood with Sarah. Discover the emotional journey within each recipe. Beyond the kitchen, she's an avid reader and music lover, lost in the rhythms of life.

More posts by Sarah Leadon