This delicious pesto pulse pasta makes a healthy vegetarian dinner that’s super easy to make. High-protein San Remo Pulse Pasta is cooked with pesto, oven roasted zucchini and extra parmesan and pine nuts. So delicious. This recipe is brought to you in collaboration with San Remo.
Pesto pasta, is there anything more comforting? That classic rich basil flavour stirred through hot pasta is a classic combination that never gets old. I think of basil as such a luxurious herb; it’s so aromatic and has so much flavour. Anything with loads of basil and I am in; and if you’re the same you’re going to love this pesto pulse pasta.
This particular pesto pasta recipe is given a boost using San Remo’s Pulse Pasta. We have fallen in love with pulse pasta in our house. If you haven’t heard of it, Pulse Pasta is made from legumes including chickpeas, lentils, peas and borlotti beans rather than wheat. As well as making it gluten free, this means it is made of over 20% protein and it’s an excellent source of fibre. Luckily it also tastes good and my regular-pasta eating husband loves it too!
To make this pesto pulse pasta, I’ve combined penne pulse pasta, pesto, parmesan, lemon and roasted zucchini, plus toasted pine nuts for a little crunch (and because, who doesn’t love toasted pine nuts?!). Yes, I like to add vegetables to everything, but trust me, roasted zucchini is delicious in its own right. I bake mine in the oven, drizzled in a little extra virgin olive oil, until it’s super soft. That way when you add it to the pasta, it kind of breaks up a little and kind of becomes almost like a sauce.
This recipe is vegetarian, but if you wanted to amp up the protein factor a little bit I would recommend adding some diced chicken, because chicken and pesto is always a good idea too! The great thing is, if you make this using pulse pasta, you naturally add a lot of extra plant-based protein to the dish without having to add meat. The San Remo version I used to develop this recipe has almost twice the protein content of regular wheat pasta, so it’s especially great for vegetarian or vegan pasta dishes. But carnivores can enjoy it too!
Pesto Pulse Pasta with Roasted Zucchini
- 2 cups San Remo penne pulse pasta (measured dried)
- 2 tbsp pesto (make your own or use store-bought)
- 1 large or 2 small zucchini
- 1 lemon
- 2 handfuls rocket
- 3 tbsp pine nuts, toasted
- 1 handful grated parmesan cheese (about 25 grams)
- extra virgin olive oil for roasting and drizzling
- salt and pepper to season
Preheat oven to 180 C. Slice zucchini into rounds about 5mm thick. Spread out over a large oven tray lined with baking paper. Drizzle over 1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil and toss around to coat, making sure to spread the zucchini out again evenly. Place in the oven to roast for approximately 25 minutes, or until super soft and starting to brown.
While the zucchini is cooking, cook the Pulse Pasta in a large pot of boiling water, according to packet instructions. Drain, then return to the pot.
Add the pesto, 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil and a good squeeze of lemon juice to the pasta and stir to combine. Let it sit aside until the zucchini is cooked. Once the zucchini is ready, add this to the pot as well and place the pot over a low heat. Stir everything together again, letting the zucchini break up a little through the pasta. Season with salt and pepper.
When the pasta is warmed through, divide it between two serving bowls and garnish with rocket, parmesan and pine nuts. Serve!
*to toast pine nuts, simply spread out over an oven tray and toast in the oven at 180 C for about 5 minutes.
*I recommend using a classic basil pesto in this recipe, however you could mix it up and use something different like a sun dried tomato pesto! For a nice zesty home made pesto, check out my recipe for Lemon Basil Pesto.