Vegan pesto pasta with vegetables is a staple for any plant-based kitchen. Use it on pasta with some veggies, and use the rest on a sandwich or pizza.
- 2-3 cups greens - spinach and de-stemmed kale work well
- 1/2-1 cup fresh basil leaves (can use cilantro or parsley)
- 1/2 cup olive oil, up to 1 cup if needed
- 1/2 cup softened raw cashews (boil raw cashews for 10 mins, then strain)
- 1-2 cloves garlic
- Juice of 1/2 Lemon
- Salt to taste (start with 1 tsp)
- 1 tbsp pine nuts (toast for extra nutty flavor)
Veggies and Pasta
- 2 bell peppers, diced
- 1 package cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup baby carrots, sliced into wheels
- Olive oil to taste
- 1-2 T salt
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1 pound pasta of choice
- Preheat & prep: preheat oven to 400 F. In a small saucepan, boil water for cashews. In a large pasta pot, boil 4-5 quarts of water for pasta, adding a generous pinch or two of salt.
- Prep vegetables: if roasting vegetables, chop and toss a couple tablespoons of olive oil. Pro tip: toss each set of vegetables separately and roast in same section of pan. Vegetable cooking time varies a bit, if your tomatoes are done before your carrots, it's much easier to remove. Roast for 20 mins, then remove from oven and flip with spatula. Put back in the oven for 10-20 mins until they begin to brown. When the tomatoes start to wrinkle and flatten, they're done. If using frozen peas, add to pasta pot when pasta has ~ 2 minutes left, or warm in microwave according to package instructions.
- Soften cashews: when water is boiling, add cashews and boil for 10-15 mins. Then strain and add to blender.
- Cook pasta: once water is boiling, prepare pasta according to package instructions to al dente, then strain.
- Prepare pesto: blend all pesto ingredients together. Add more olive oil 1 tablespoon at a time if pesto is too thick.
- Combine & enjoy: add a serving of pasta to a bowl, toss with a few Tbsp of pesto and as many veggies as desired. Gently mix with fork, tongs, spoon, etc. Add more pesto and salt to taste, and enjoy!
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