If you’re looking for a quick and easy pasta lunch, look no further than this delicious Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta recipe!
And that’s what’s so perfect about pesto pasta, it’s truly so quick and easy to make! One of those lazy lunches that requires minimal effort, but the taste is just incredible. Follow me…
Sun Dried Tomato Pesto
When you see jars of ‘red pesto’ at the store, 9/10 it’s sun dried tomato pesto. Before we get started, if you haven’t already do check out my homemade sun dried tomato pesto if you fancy a homemade version. Alternatively, you could use a store-bought sun dried tomato pesto. Either way, you can still use the same toppings and exactly the same method for this recipe.
Whatever pesto you use, one of the most common issues when making pasta is the pesto drying out and going greasy.
How to stop Pesto Pasta drying out?
I don’t know about you, but my experience of pesto pasta used to be ‘oh yummy, it looks so saucy… Wait… Where are you going? Oh no, Grease… Send help!’. Or something of that nature. Truth is, it’s very easy to serve up pesto pasta that’s ultra greasy and not that saucy. Which is understandable as pesto has a large quantity of oil, but we want saucy pesto pasta right? Okay, here’s a trick for you.
Starchy Pasta Water
By tossing starchy pasta water through the pasta and pesto, it creates an emulsion, which in turn creates a saucy, almost creamy texture. This will create more of a pasta sauce, instead of a pesto that just about coats the pasta.
The second tip is to do this in a bowl away from heat, as opposed to doing it in a pan on the hob. Pesto is often heavily made up of parmesan, and because it isn’t that saucy, when you start trying to fry the pesto it starts frying the cheese. Which we don’t want.
Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta
What’s the best pasta to use?
Here I use linguine, but realistically you can use any pasta you want. I just love how the pesto wraps itself around the long noodles in this instance.
What can I add to sun dried tomato pesto pasta?
In with the pasta, I add a pinch of chilli flakes. The gentle heat really compliments the sun dried tomatoes. In the past, I have stirred through both grilled chicken and sausage, both of which work great. Roasted veggies also work great.
How can I store this?
If you’re not eating it right away, just allow it to completely cool then tightly store it in the fridge for a couple of days.
Can I reheat leftovers?
I tend not to reheat leftover pesto recipes, just because they tend to turn greasy and lose their ‘juiciness’. Therefore I recommend serving any leftovers at room temp. Tastes just as delicious!
Process shots: cook & drain pasta (photo 1), toss in pesto and pasta water (photo 2).
Serving Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta
When tossing the pasta, pesto and pasta water, it’s important to do it in a separate bowl, not on the stove. The heat from the pasta and water will lightly cook the best. Having it on heat will burn the basil in the pesto; it’ll also cause it to split and go greasy.
Once you’ve tossed through the pesto and pasta serve straight away so it stays warm, then add on some extra goodies. Here I garnish with Pine Nuts, Shaved Parmesan and Fresh Basil.
Fancy something a little creamier? Check out my Creamy Sun Dried Tomato Pasta! (photo below).
Alrighty, let’s tuck into the full recipe for this sun dried tomato pesto pasta shall we?!
How to make Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta (Full Recipe & Video)
Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta
- Large Pot & Colander
- Large Mixing Bowl & Tongs
- Cup/Mug (for scooping pasta water)
Ingredients (check list):
- 7oz / 200g Pasta of choice (here I use Linguine)
- 1/2 cup Sun Dried Tomato Pesto, or to preference
- 1/3 cup / 80ml Starchy Pasta Water, or as needed (see notes)
- pinch of Chilli Flakes (optional)
- Salt & Black Pepper, to taste
- Shaved Parmesan
- Pine Nuts, toasted if desired
- Small Basil Leaves
- Cook your pasta in salted boiling water until al dente, reserving a cup of starchy water just before you drain it.
- Combine pasta in a bowl with 1/2 cup / 2-3 heaped tbsp pesto & chilli flakes if using.
- Toss through 1/3 cup / 80ml starchy pasta water (or until you get to your desired texture, start off a little at a time). Serve with extra basil, pine nuts and parmesan!
Quick 1 min demo!
Your Private Notes:
If you’re after some more funky pesto recipes be sure to give these a ganders too:
Deliciously Different Pesto Recipes
If you loved this Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta recipe then be sure to Pin it for later! Already made it or got a burning question? Give me a shout in the comments below and pick up your free ecookbook along the way!