Pistachio Pesto Pasta

By Whisper of Yum
  • Total Time:
    20 minutes
  • Servings:


  • 2 cups fresh basil, leaves only
  • ¼ cup pistachios
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • ½ cup good quality olive oil - I use Brightland’s Awake
  • ¾ cup parmigiano reggiano, freshly grated
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt + more to taste
  • ¾ cup reserved pasta water
  • 12 ounces pasta of choice - cavatelli, ziti, penne, casarecce, spaghetti

For Serving

  • parmesan


  1. Combine basil, pistachios and garlic cloves in a food processor. Process on high until mixture is minced.
  2. Switch processing speed to low and slowly add olive oil.
  3. Add parmigiano reggiano incrementally, followed by lemon juice and kosher salt and continue to process on low until smooth and combined. Place in a small bowl and cover.
  4. Meanwhile, bring a pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta until al dente. Reserve ¾ cup of pasta water. Drain the pasta and place in a large mixing bowl.
  5. Add four tablespoons of pesto and mix well. Gradually add ¼ cup pasta water. Toss to coat and adjust seasoning with salt and freshly cracked pepper if needed or more water if the pasta appears dry.
  6. Enjoy immediately.