Ready in 20 minutes, this creamy basil pesto pasta recipe is perfect for any occasion. You only need a few ingredients to make this easy pasta recipe.
Looking for a quick and tasty pasta dish? Look no further than this easy-to-make pesto pasta! Using my homemade pesto, this recipe is packed with flavor and is sure to satisfy. Whether you're a fan of classics like cherry tomato pasta and spaghetti aglio e olio, or more adventurous flavors like lemon ricotta pasta, you're sure to love this delicious pesto pasta recipe.
Table Of Contents:
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Easy: New to the kitchen? Then this pesto pasta is for you. As easy a cook, rinse and toss, this dish doesn't require any chef skills to make.
- Quick: It takes about 20 minutes from start to finish, making this a great choice for a weeknight dinner.
- Flavors: The combination of basil and garlic in the pesto makes this a feast of flavors.
- Crowd pleaser: This might be an easy dish, but everyone loves it. It's the perfect choice for parties or potlucks.
Ingredients To Make Pesto Pasta
- Pasta: I prefer to use spaghetti, but other kinds of pasta such as linguine, penne or rigatoni work, too.
- Olive oil: Extra virgin oliveoil works best in this recipe.
- Onion and garlic: For flavor and aroma.
- Pesto: The pasta is going to be as good as the pesto you use. You can either use my homemade basil pesto recipe or use store-bought.
How To Make Creamy Pesto Pasta
- Cook the pasta al dente according to the packaging. Reserve 1 cup pasta water to use for the sauce.
- Heat the olive oil in a pan and saute the onion until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for a minute.
- Add the pesto and cook for some minutes.
- Add the pasta water and simmer for a few minutes.
- Add the drained pasta to the sauce and toss so all is coated with the sauce.
- Top with grated parmesan if desired and serve.
This easy pesto pasta is a complete dish on its own, but you can also turn it into a feast by serving caprese salad or burrata salad as an appetizer then serve the pasta as a side dish with grilled chicken, caprese chicken, balsamic chicken or Italian skillet chicken. It would also go well with seafood such as Mediterranean shrimp or garlic lemon shrimp.
Storage and Reheating
Store the leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days. To serve, place the pasta in a pan over medium heat and add 2-3 tablespoons of water. Cover with a lid and reheat for 10-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
You can also freeze this dish for up to 3 months. To serve, thaw in the fridge overnight then reheat over medium heat as instructed.
Frequently Asked Questions
It's best to make this quick pasta recipe right before serving. However, you can prepare the pasta up to a day in advance, toss it with olive oil to keep the noodles from sticking to each other and then make the sauce when you're ready to serve.
There is no need to heat the pesto before adding the pasta.
Depending on your preference, you can use ½ to 1 cup of pesto to make this dish.
More Pasta Recipes
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Creamy Pesto Pasta Recipe
- 1 lb pasta
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 yellow onion sliced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ½ cup pesto more if desired
- Freshly grated parmesan to top optional
- Prepare the pasta in salty water according to the package instructions. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water.
- Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium high heat. Saute the onion until translucent. Add in the garlic and cook for a few minutes.
- Add the pesto and stir to combine. Lower the heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes. Add ¾ cup pasta water to the pan and bring it to a simmer. Let the sauce simmer for 5 minutes to thicken up a bit.
- Add the drained pasta to the pesto sauce and toss to make sure it's well coated. If the pasta looks dry, add more pesto and pasta water.
- Serve warm with grated parmesan.
- I prefer spaghetti for this recipe but other types of pasta including linguine, penne and rigatoni work too.
- You can use my homemade pesto recipe or use store-bought pesto.
- Store the leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days. To reheat, add a couple tablespoons of water and reheat over medium heat for 10-20 minutes.
- Serve as is or with some grilled chicken, Italian skillet chicken, Mediterranean shrimp or balsamic chicken.