Tossed in a flavorful lemon pesto and packed with colorful spring vegetables, this pesto pasta primavera is the perfect way to use up that fresh spring produce!
Don’t ya just love it when alllll the healthy spring eats hit you in the face and they bring carbs with ’em? It’s about the best thing I can think of for a Monday.
ESPECIALLY since we’re heading into peak spring produce season. Holy cow, it’s May in only a few days! I’ve only eaten asparagus 9 times so far this year, what is this insanity.
Soooo let’s make up for lost time and pile literally ALL the spring goods in a pasta primavera, cover the whole deal in pesto, and call our job here done.
Spoiler alert: many things can be improved by shoving pesto in it. Just a fact.
The beauty of this pasta skillet is the fact we’re disguising a usually calorie-laden pasta to be healthy. While at the same time pumping all the flavors up to max.
50% veggies. 50% carbs. 100% chance I’m gonna pour myself a glass of wine alongside a big bowl of this pesto pasta primavera tonight. ??
Let’s make some uber healthy pesto pasta primavera,yo! >>
First and foremost, NO worries whatsoever if you don’t have all the veggies in the ingredient list on hand right now.
You can easily swap out for others or simply omit altogether if you’re not a fan of asparagus or sugar snap peas. (although I don’t know if we can be friends anymore tbh. KIDDING)
- First up is our pesto, which is LEGENDARY. It’s just as simple basil pesto kicked up with lemon which makes it SO fresh and light-tasting. Save extras of this pesto for your sandwiches and wraps, trust me.
- Spring veggies! Again, totally use whatever you have on hand or you can follow my suggestions of asparagus, sugar snap peas, carrots, radishes, and spinach. We’re just doing a quick saute + braise until they’re tender.
From there, it’s just cooking up a mess of spaghetti, tossing all of the above together, and topping our beautiful skillet with grated Parm + more lemon zest.
You heard it here first, this is quite literally a bowl full of all the best parts of spring. I ate this every day for lunch and dinner for a few days straight which is NOT typically what my variety-dependent self does. ??
The prettiest, the healthiest, and the carb-loadingest. That’s a whammy of pros I can get behind.
Let’s make some more spring dinners!! Try these favs out next. ♥
Lemon Pesto Pasta Primavera with Spring Vegetables
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/3 cup pine nuts (or walnuts or almonds)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium shallot, finely diced
- 1-1/2 cups asparagus spears, cut into 2-in pieces
- 1-1/2 cups carrots, halved and cut diagonally into 2-in pieces
- 1 cup sugar snap peas
- 1 cup radishes, halved and thinly sliced
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup vegetable broth (or chicken broth if non-vegetarian)
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
- 12 oz hot spaghetti pasta, cooked according to package instructions
- Additional Parmesan and grated lemon zest for topping, optional
- Place basil, lemon juice, zest, garlic, Parmesan, and pine nuts in a food processor or blender and process on high speed drizzling oil through top. Scrape down sides as necessary and blend until pesto is smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil until shimmery. Add shallot, asparagus, carrots, snap peas, and radishes. Saute several minutes until vegetables are just softened.
- Reduce heat to medium and add garlic and spinach. Saute 1-2 minutes until spinach is wilted. Add vegetable broth to pan and let vegetables simmer until tender, about 5-10 minutes.
- Add prepared pesto, lemon juice, basil, and cooked spaghetti to vegetables and cook several minutes over medium heat until pasta primavera is heated through. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Garnish pasta primavera with additional Parmesan and grated lemon zest on top if desired. Serve warm and enjoy!