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Easy Homemade Pesto Pasta

Krista S

Aside from pasta with seafood marinara sauce, I do love pesto pasta. Back when I was younger, I used to work in a cakeshop and restaurant. Why do you think I am so into great desserts and dishes? LOL. 🙂 But kidding aside, it was there where I first had a bite of pesto pasta. Right there and then, I fell in love with it. Simple yet so juicy. I then started making it on my own.

If you go to the grocery stores, you’d find a bunch of ready-made pesto sauces. But this I tell you; if you really want a sumptuous pesto pasta meal, I highly recommend making it at home. Please spare yourself and skip the store-bought sauces! You’d definitely thank me later on! 🙂

This dish is quite easy to make. In fact, anyone can make pesto pasta. But…NOT everyone can make one that is slick with plenty of pesto sauce without adding too much oil. One challenge of making this type of pasta dish is it is either dry or too oily. You sure don’t want that.

Take a look at this recipe:

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Easy Homemade Pesto Pasta

  • Author: Myles
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 3 to 4 servings 1x


The secret to an excellent pesto pasta is its juiciness – not dry but not too oily. That’s exactly what this recipe would yield. Make it like a real Italian!


Units Scale


12 ounces spaghetti pasta

2 teaspoons salt

3/4 cup pasta cooking water

Parmesan, for serving

Pesto sauce:

1/4 c. pine nuts

2 c. fresh basil leaves

1/2 c. freshly grated parmesan

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper

1 garlic clove

6 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil



  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt.
  2. Add pasta and cook following the instructions on the packaging.
  3. Before draining, reserve 1 cup of the pasta cooking water.
  4. Drain pasta using a colander and leave it for about a minute.
  5. Transfer pasta to a bowl and add the pesto sauce and about 1/4 cup of water. Toss to coat the pasta in pesto. Add more water if necessary.
  6. Season with salt and pepper as needed.
  7. Garnish with freshly grated parmesan cheese and serve immediately.

Pesto sauce:

  1. Heat a small skillet over medium-high heat. Do NOT add oil.
  2. Add the pine nuts and toast until light brown. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
  3. Place all the ingredients EXCEPT THE OIL in a blender or food processor, and blitz until finely chopped.
  4. Slowly pour the oil in while the motor is running. Blitz until smooth.



  • You can substitute the spaghetti pasta with ziti, penne, or any of your favorites.
  • Want to be sure to cook the pasta right?  Read this article and get it right every time.
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes

If you are reheating pesto pasta leftover, do not toss it on a hot stove. Doing so will turn the basil black. The best thing that you can do is to bring it to room temperature before consuming it.

For leftover, keep it in an airtight container and store it in the fridge. If you want, you can squeeze a little bit of lemon juice to finish your pesto pasta. That should add more flavor to it.

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