Arugula Pesto Pasta is a flavorful dish that makes a quick and easy weeknight dinner!
Pesto is one of my favorite ways to elevate and transform an otherwise boring dish. I typically turn to my Spinach Basil Pesto , which has the traditional flavor of fresh basil and extra nutrition from the spinach. Today, however, we are switching things up and making arugula pesto.
Instead of using basil, we are using arugula in our pesto. Arugula fans, you’re going to love this Arugula Pesto Pasta. I also use walnuts, which pair very well with the peppery arugula and add a great boost of omega 3s.
What is a pasta dish without veggies!? For this one, I added some frozen peas (fresh are in season and would be magnificent) and tomatoes.
Can I Make Arugula Pesto Vegan?
I used Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, but you absolutely don’t have to. If you’d like to make your arugula pesto vegan, substitute nutritional yeast in place of the cheese. It lends a cheesy taste and feel, and also adds B vitamins.
Arugula Pesto Uses
Of course, I think you should use it in my Arugula Pesto Pasta recipe! Here are a few more ideas of what you can do with your arugula pesto:
- Mix it in with your scrambled eggs.
- Mix it with smashed chickpeas and add it to toast like this recipe.
- Grill or roast a large batch of vegetables and then coat them with the pesto. This makes a delicious side dish!
- Use it as a topping/sauce for fish, chicken, or steak.
How to Make Arugula Pesto Pasta
This is such a quick and easy dinner! Let me show you the step-by-step instructions.
In a pot of well-salted water, cook 8 ounces of whole wheat spaghetti according to the package instructions. Preserve 1/3 cup of the cooking water before you drain the spaghetti.
While the pasta is cooking, prepare the pesto.
Start with 4 cups packed arugula, 1/4 cup walnuts, 1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, 1 small garlic clove, minced, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Process in the food processor, and then, with the machine running, add 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil. Hello, flavor!!
Add the preserved pasta water to a pan/skillet and over medium heat. Add in 1 cup halved grape tomatoes and 1 cup frozen peas. Cook until they are hot, about 3 minutes.
Add in the pasta and pesto and stir to combine. Continue to toss until everything is hot.
Here are the printable instructions for you:Print
If you like easy pasta dinners, you might also like this Whole Wheat Penne with Mushrooms, Spinach, and Tomatoes or this One Pot Penne with Broccoli. This Chicken Fajita Pasta is also a favorite!
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