Fresh and Zesty Pesto Pasta

Fresh and Zesty Pesto Pasta plated

Recipe Information

Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 People

This Fresh and Zesty Pesto Pasta recipe has been a family favorite for years. It's the perfect combination of fresh basil, garlic, and Parmesan cheese that creates a delightful burst of flavor in every bite. The simplicity of this dish makes it an ideal choice for both busy weeknights and special occasions.

I first discovered this recipe while traveling through Italy, where I was inspired by the local cuisine and the abundance of fresh ingredients. Since then, I've made it countless times, tweaking it here and there to create the perfect balance of flavors.

One of the best things about this recipe is its versatility. You can easily customize it by adding your favorite vegetables, proteins, or even swapping out the pasta for a gluten-free option. The possibilities are endless!


  • 8 oz spaghetti or linguine
  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Optional: cherry tomatoes, grilled chicken, or shrimp


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a food processor or blender, combine the basil, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, and garlic. Pulse until coarsely chopped.
  3. With the food processor running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil until the mixture is smooth and well combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Toss the cooked pasta with the pesto sauce, ensuring each strand is evenly coated.
  5. Serve immediately, garnished with additional Parmesan cheese and optional toppings such as cherry tomatoes, grilled chicken, or shrimp.


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