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Italian veggie pesto pasta recipe

Italian veggie pesto pasta recipe

  • Recipes
  • Ingredients
  • Pasta
  • Pesto pasta

The secret to making this a quick and easy dish is to slice the vegetables thinly - this way it only takes them 5 minutes to cook and they still have a bit of a bite. Grate the ricotta salata in at the very end of cooking so it doesn't dry out.

3 people made this

IngredientsServes: 4

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 small courgettes, sliced in half lengthwise, then thinly sliced
  • 4 small tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 small carrots, thinly sliced
  • 1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
  • 4 teaspoons pesto sauce
  • salt, to taste
  • 400g short twisted pasta, like trofie
  • 50g freshly grated ricotta salata or other salty cheese

MethodPrep:10min ›Cook:20min ›Ready in:30min

  1. Heat oil in a pan over medium heat; add chopped shallot and cook until softened. Add courgettes, tomatoes, carrots and celery; stir to coat in oil and cook for 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat but keep warm.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in abundant salted water until al dente.
  3. When the pasta is nearly cooked, spoon pesto into the bottom of a large serving bowl and stir in a ladle of pasta cooking water. Then drain pasta and add to the pesto. Add cooked vegetables and toss well.
  4. Add a drizzle of olive oil on top of pasta and finish with some freshly grated ricotta salata.

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Garlic Roasted Vegetable Pesto Pasta

5 Nov, 2017 Garlic Roasted Vegetable Pesto Pasta Joanne Rappos mains Quick and easy meatless meal with loads of flavour Pesto Pasta vegetarian, Italian

Pasta is one of those dishes that is fabulous for a quick mid week meal. Pasta with pesto is on rotation pretty much every week in our house. It’s delicious, low effort and you literally can add anything else you want into it.

This is one of my favourite ways to eat pasta. Going to East side Mario’s was a thing growing up. A big group of us friends would have lots of laughs and some mediocre food with endless amounts of bread and their salad - oh goodness that salad! I would always order the same thing. Either the cheese cappelletti or the vegetable primavera, and I would gorge on their salad all evening! Well this dish reminded me of the veggie pasta I always use to get there. The veggies in this dish are roasted and nutty flavoured and fabulous. Roasting the veggies makes all the difference. I’m sure the veggies at the restaurant were probably steamed. No matter though.

The addition of the pesto takes this pasta dish from good to great. Adds so much flavour and a lot more colour. This is such a great staple recipe that keeps all in the family happy and doubles as a great cold pasta salad the next day. It’s also a very versatile recipe. You can sub in different veggies - whatever you may have on hand to make it a clean-out-the-fridge kind of pesto pasta dish. It works really well for that. Whatever you decide to add or substitute veggie-wise, I’m sure you will be happy with it! It’s just one of those dishes that everyone loves!

Pesto Veggie Pasta

Rotini pasta joins sauteed vegetables including zucchini, summer squash, sweet corn, and cherry tomatoes, seasoned with a robust Montreal seasoning blend, then homemade basil pesto and salty pasta cooking water are swirled in to create a light and silky sauce. I am obsessed with adding pasta cooking water to pasta dishes – including this pesto pasta. The starch in the pasta cooking water mixes with the pesto allowing it to cling to every single swirl of the rotini.

This gluten free, vegetarian pesto pasta dish is garlicky, super fast, and so so good. We will be making and eating all spring and summer long!

Asian Noodle Bowls

Italian Veggie Pasta

We sure love pasta around here! This Italian veggie pasta is my absolute favorite this summer! It’s super easy to make and it’s full of color and flavor.

Plus, it kind of gives you the feeling you’re on a vacation to Italy… At least when you close your eyes and pretend you’re sitting in front of an old stone house in Tuscany overlooking a beautiful vineyard after a sunny day at the beach. I think you get the idea, right? Haha! I guess I’m really looking forward to my next holiday. I could go on like this for hours…

What you need for this Italian veggie pasta

To make this veggie pasta, you need fusilli (I used whole wheat fusilli), a medium zucchini, half an eggplant, a yellow bell pepper, half a red onion, artichokes, capers, olives, cherry tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, and loooots of basil.

The recipe really couldn’t be much easier. First, sauté the onion and the garlic and then add the zucchini, the yellow bell pepper, and eggplant. Roast it for a couple of minutes. Then just add the cooked pasta and the rest of the ingredients. Stir in the olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and sprinkle with fresh basil. That’s it!

It’s important that you use a good olive oil with great flavor and aroma for this recipe. Make sure your oil is labeled “extra virgin”. The quality of the oil you use really does make a big difference when it comes to health benefits and taste.

I love doubling the recipe because the leftovers make an awesome pasta salad for BBQs or picnics. Sometimes, I also add marinara sauce for a little change.

I hope you like this recipe for Italian veggie pasta as much as we do and it also makes you feel like taking a short trip to Italy.

As always, I love hearing from you guys. If you give it a try, let me know how you liked it or tag me on Instagram with @_veganheaven_

How To Make Pesto Pasta With Summer Vegetables

In my opinion, the most important part of a good pesto pasta is the pesto sauce. I always make my own pesto these days and it’s so much better than the store-bought stuff. But, the store-bought stuff is totally acceptable, especially when you’re looking for quick and easy! The main reason I don’t buy store-bought is because I like my pesto dairy free and it’s hard to find dairy free pesto at the store.

Another important part of this recipe is cooking the veggies until they’re browned and caramelized. I thought I hated zucchini and squash for so long but I recently realized I actually love them but I need to cook them long enough to get some real flavor on them.

The last part of a good pesto pasta is choosing the right noodle. The different shapes of noodles don’t taste any different from each other but it’s important to choose a noodle that will really hold onto the pesto sauce. I like to use a hollow noodle that has some nice ridges or curves so that it really holds onto the sauce. You can get creative and use any kind of noodle you like!

This Pesto Pasta with Summer Vegetables is always on rotation around here this time of year. It’s so easy to make, really flavorful and a great way to get kids to eat their veggies! I like to make my own pesto and use one part fresh herbs and 4 parts kale or spinach.

    1. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente drain, reserving 2 Tbsp. pasta cooking liquid.
    2. Meanwhile, toast 2 Tbsp. pine nuts in a small skillet over medium-low heat, shaking skillet back and forth, until lightly toasted, 2𔃁 minutes set aside.
    3. Blanch 5 cups basil in a small pot of boiling water 30 seconds. Using a slotted spoon or spider, transfer to a large bowl filled with ice water.
    4. Purée garlic, oil, 1/2 tsp. salt, and remaining 1/3 cup pine nuts in a blender until nuts are very finely chopped and mixture is creamy. Using your hands, lift basil from ice water, shaking off excess but not all water from leaves (a bit of water will aid emulsification). Add to blender and purée just to combine. Add 1 cup Parmesan purée just to combine.
    5. Transfer pesto to a medium bowl, then stir in reserved pasta cooking liquid. Transfer pasta to a large serving bowl or platter and toss with pesto. Top with Parmesan and reserved toasted pine nuts and garnish with basil.

    This Recipe is Featured In:

    Vegan Pesto Pasta

    • Author: World of Vegan
    • Prep Time: 5 minutes
    • Cook Time: 15 minutes
    • Total Time: 20 minutes
    • Yield: 2 servings 1 x
    • Category: Main Course
    • Method: Blend
    • Cuisine: Italian


    This super-easy vegan pesto pasta could become your weekday dinner of choice. If you some pesto ahead of time, you might be able to have a fantastic dinner in a matter of 10 minutes.


    • 9 ounces of vegan pasta (tagliatelle is ideal)
    • 1 cup of frozen peas
    • 1 zucchini (about 4 ounces )
    • 1/2 cup of fresh spinach
    • 1 tablespoon of toasted pine nuts
    • 2 tablespoons of vegan pesto (see recipe below)
    • ½ of a red onion
    • 1 tablespoon of olive oil


    1. Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the package
    2. In another pan, start with heating up the oil. When it’s nice and hot, add the finely sliced red onion and cook for 2 minutes.
    3. Now add the frozen peas with the sliced zucchini (¼ of an inch slices) and cook for another 3 minutes.
    4. Add the spinach and season with salt and pepper.
    5. When the pasta is ready, rinse it and add it straight into the pan. Turn off the heat and add the pesto in and mix nicely until it coats all the pasta.
    6. Serve with some sprinkled pine nuts on top and enjoy!

    Keywords: vegan pesto, pesto pasta, italian pesto, italian vegan

    Did you make this recipe?

    Tag @Vegan on Instagram and hashtag it #worldofvegan

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    Easy Pesto Pasta

    Learn how to make pesto pasta with this quick & easy recipe! With bright, bold flavor, it's one of our favorite weeknight dinners.

    The first snow came early in Chicago this year. It was barely November and we were driving to an appointment. It was snowing, and then all of a sudden it went from “really charming” to “wow it’s really coming down!” We sat in the cold car way too long, wearing way too-light coats, staring at brake lights and a grey sky. I thought – really – what have we done?? I write a blog about vegetables, I’m shooting a book that’s due before May (when the spring farmers markets open) and we’ve moved so far from the sun!

    We got to where we were going – an industrial area in the Pullman neighborhood where, situated on the roof of the Method production facility, is Gotham Greens. I’ve been obsessed with their locally grown greens since the moment I came across their deliciously spicy arugula earlier this year. We got a tour of their rooftop greenhouse, and even though it was cold and miserable outside, it was so warm and sunny up there. There was a sea of the softest butter lettuces, my favorite spicy arugula, and the loveliest scent of fresh basil.

    Later that night, with a fridge full of greens and a pantry full of not much else, I made my go-to quick & easy dinner: this five minute pesto pasta. We weren’t about to head out into the snow for any additional groceries, and really, nothing beats pasta in terms of combining bold flavor and easy prep.

    How to Make Pesto Pasta

    As I said above, making pesto pasta is easy. Here’s all you need to do:

    1. Blend up a batch of my 6-ingredient basil pesto, or use store-bought pesto in a pinch.
    2. Cook your pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water according to the package directions.
    3. Before draining the pasta, reserve some of the starchy pasta water. Then, add 1/4 cup of this pasta water back into the pot with your pesto, and stir to thin the pesto.
    4. Toss in the cooked pasta, and mix until the pesto thoroughly coats it.
    5. Add a big handful of arugula and toss until it’s barely wilted.
    6. Finish everything with a big squeeze of lemon, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and toasted pine nuts.

    Pesto Pasta Recipe Tips

    Never made pesto pasta before? Here are a few tips to get you started:

    • Reserve some pasta water. My #1 pesto pasta tip! The salty, starchy pasta water will loosen the pesto enough to make a light sauce over the pasta. Because of its salty, starchy quality, this water will make a more flavorful, thicker final pesto sauce than regular water would.
    • Add the greens at the last minute. I like my greens to be just slightly wilted, not totally limp. Toss them in at the last minute so that the hot pasta can wilt them, and then serve right away, while they still have a little crunch and vibrant color.
    • Taste and adjust. Pestos vary in brightness, saltiness, and overall intensity of flavor, so make sure you taste and adjust your final dish before serving. Depending on your pesto, you might need to add an extra squeeze of lemon, a pinch of salt, or a big grind of black pepper to make your pesto pasta sing.

    Pesto Pasta Recipe Variations

    Like all simple recipes, this one’s fun to play with. Here are a few ideas to change it up:

    • No pine nuts on hand? Use walnuts or almonds instead.
    • Finish the dish with spinach or kale in place of arugula, or skip the greens altogether.
    • Try using kale pesto instead of basil for a cold weather variation.
    • Garnish the final dish with a few fresh or roasted cherry tomatoes, roasted cauliflower, or asparagus.
    • Stir in some mini mozzarella balls or a sprinkle of capers.
    • Swap the spaghetti for your favorite pasta shape, or use spaghetti squash in its place.

    What’s your favorite way to eat pesto pasta? Let me know in the comments!

    Start with homemade basil pesto!

    For the very best pesto pasta you can make at home, you’ve got to start with homemade basil pesto sauce! Of course, you can use your favorite purchased brand of pesto too. But making your own at home takes the flavor to new heights. To make basil pesto, you’ll need a food processor or mortal and pestle. You also can use a small blender.

    For the homemade basil pesto, you’ll need 1 cup of fresh basil leaves. It’s best if you’re growing it at home, but if you’ve got to purchase it, that’s ok too! (By the way: if you’re looking to grow basil at home, here’s all you need to know about How to Grow Basil. It is well worth your time!) For the recipe, we’ve got several different pesto recipe options for you:

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