Spinach Pesto Pasta is an easy and vibrant dish that can be whipped up in less than 15 minutes. Easy to customise and make ahead.
Spinach Pesto Pasta
Can you think of a more classic cheap convenience meal than Pesto Pasta? When I was a poor student back in the day, Pesto Pasta was always our skint meal of choice. It is cheap, reliable and easy to customise with your preferred vegetables or protein.
Family-friendly, the vibrant green colour and smooth texture of the sauce is sure to tempt adventurous but food-fussy kids. I have seen this recipe called Popeye Pasta or Hulk Pasta – what a great way to get little ones to add some healthy spinach to their diets!
Easy Spinach Pesto
This pasta with easy Spinach Pesto doesn’t come from a jar but is still simple, cheap and easy to prepare. I have skipped the nuts on this one for ease and to keep the cost down.
Apart from the fresh spinach and basil, all the ingredients are store-cupboard staples. This recipe is an excellent way to use up spinach that’s getting past it’s best too – it always comes in such big packets!
It is quick and easy to make – simply add all the Spinach Pesto ingredients to a blender or food processor (I use my Nutribullet) and blend until smooth. It can easily be done while the pasta is cooking.
Spinach Pesto is easily made ahead too – you can keep it in the fridge for 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months. I love to make a big batch and portion it out for freezing. That way I always have something quick and easy for dinner on busy nights.
- Basil – you could also parsley in a pinch.
- Parmesan – or a vegan/dairy free alternative.
- Olive Oil
- Garlic – free free to add more cloves
- Lemon Juice and Zest
- Pasta – any shapes will work with this dish. I personally love this Fusilli Bucati – it holds shape well and sauces cling to it perfectly.
- Double/Heavy Cream or Crème Fraîche – optional, if you want to upgrade your pasta sauce add a few tablespoons in before stirring in the pasta.
I love this Spinach Pesto Pasta simply as is with a large green salad on the side – It makes a great quick and simple meal. My Tomato and Mozzarella Salad is the perfect accompaniment.
You can also use the recipe as a base and add extra cooked or raw vegetables – sliced cherry tomatoes or olives are a great addition.
You can also stir in some cooked protein if you wish – cooked chicken, prawns, bacon or sausage all work well.
I hope you like this recipe as much as I do! Please leave a comment or tag me on Instagram @carrieskitchen_ if you make it!
More quick & easy Pasta recipes:
Spinach Pesto Pasta
- Pot for cooking pasta
- 500 grams your favourite pasta shapes
- 4 tbsp double/heavy cream or Crème Fraîche optional
- 200 grams fresh spinach
- 50 grams parmesan cheese grated
- 15 grams fresh basil
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 lemon juice and zest
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- pinch salt to taste
- Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and cook the pasta to packet instructions. When done, drain the pasta and reserve a cup of the cooking water.
- Meanwhile, add the pesto ingredients to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Add more salt and/or lemon juice to taste if desired.
- Add the spinach pesto to the warm pot used to cook the pasta over a very low heat and stir to warm slightly. Add in the cream or Crème Fraîche if using plus a couple of tablespoons of the reserved pasta water.
- Add the pasta back into the pot and stir well to coat with the pesto. Add a little more pasta water and/or cream until it reaches your desired consistency.
- Serve topped with some extra parmesan or fresh basil.