Basil Mint Pesto Pasta
A creative twist on a great classic, we love how easy and simple it is to make this flavorful pesto.
Simply spread this basil mint pesto over flatbread, appetizers or use as a light sauce for your favorite pasta! Add chickpeas, mushrooms, onions, and carrots for a little extra nutrition.
A lovely dish for vegetarians and familiar enough for little ones who might be picky eaters.
Total Time: 25 minutes (10 mins prep, 15 mins to cook)
Yield: about 3-4 servings
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves
- 2/3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (parmesan)
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted
- 3 large cloves garlic, minced
- 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt (more to taste)
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper (more to taste)
- 2 small sundried tomatoes
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (more to taste)
- 1 lb penne, rotini or your favorite pasta!
Extra Ingredients (Optional):
- 1 can of chickpeas, rinsed
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
- 2 carrots, minced
- 3 mushrooms, chopped
- Set a pot of water to boil over high heat. Add 1/2 tsp salt and your choice of pasta. Boil over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, for about 7 - 10 (varies depending on size of pasta) until pasta is al dente. Strain and set aside.
- (skip this step if you are using toasted pine nuts) Spread the pine nuts evenly onto a dry pan over medium-low heat, without any oil or butter. Stir or rotate constantly for 4-6 minutes until the pine nuts are golden in color and fragrant, careful not to burn. Remove from heat.
- Combine mint, basil, Parmigiano-Reggiano, oil, toasted pine nuts and garlic in a food processor or blender and pulse until herbs are finely chopped but not puréed. Add vinegar, salt, pepper sundried tomatoes and red pepper flakes. Pulse again to combine. Add additional salt and pepper to taste.
- (optional) For a little extra nutrition, sauté onions, carrots, and mushrooms over medium-low heat in 1 tablespoon of olive oil for about 10-15 minutes, until soft and fragrant. Add chickpeas, salt and black pepper. Combine and then remove from heat.
- Mix the basil mint pesto with the pasta (and vegetables) in a large bowl, sprinkle with extra Parmigiano-Reggiano, and serve!
Pine nuts can be a bit on the expensive side, but they are one of the ingredients that make pesto so delicious. You can usually find smaller one ounce packages of them at most major convenience and grocery stores in the international or spice aisle (if not with the other nuts).
If your pesto comes out a little dry, you can add more olive oil in the blender or a couple squeezes of fresh lemon juice!
For a little added nutrition, sauté any extra vegetables you have in olive oil and combine with chickpeas before adding to the pasta. A few of our go-to's are onions, carrots, and mushrooms.
The Culinary aromas we love:
We love basil and mint so much, we created a handpoured candle to celebrate this culinary scent. Other favorites of ours are Citrus & Cilantro, Lemongrass & Thyme, and Ginger, Lemon & Saffron. These make wonderful gifts for any foodie in your life.
Each Culinary Candle includes a recipe card matching its scent.
See the full Culinary Candle collection for more culinary inspiration.