Feast on This Veggie-Packed Pasta -

Feast on This Veggie-Packed Pasta

Spaghetti with Pesto, Asparagus, and Zucchini


Hands-On Time: 30 Minutes Total Time: 35 Minutes


2 cups fresh basil, packed

½ cup toasted unsalted walnuts

2 small cloves garlic

1 tsp ground black pepper, divided

½ tsp sea salt, divided

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

350g  thin asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 4cm-inch lengths

1 zucchini, trimmed and cut into matchsticks or shredded

1 cup frozen petite or baby peas, thawed 220g whole-grain spaghetti

½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated or sliced 1 tbsp lemon zest (about 1 medium lemon)


In a food processor, pulse basil, walnuts, garlic, and half the pepper and salt until finely chopped, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the processor running, slowly drizzle in oil, then gently add ¼ cup water, and blend until a chunky sauce forms.

Mist a large skillet with cooking spray, and heat basil mixture on medium-high. Add asparagus, and cook, stirring frequently, about 2 minutes. Add 1/3 cup water, and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until asparagus is tender- crisp and no liquid remains, about 3 minutes. Add zucchini, peas, and remaining pepper and salt, and cook, stirring frequently, until zucchini is tender, about 2 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large pot, cook pasta al dente, according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water. Return pasta to the pot.

Add the asparagus and basil mixtures to the pasta and heat on low, stirring gently. Gradually stir in reserved cooking water, 1 tbsp at a time, until sauce reaches desired consistency. Divide among plates, and top evenly with Parmesan and lemon zest.

NUTRITIONAL INFO (2 cups): Calories: 493, Total Fat: 27g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 13g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g, Carbs: 47g, Fiber: 8g, Sugars: 5g, Protein: 18g, Sodium: 486mg, Cholesterol: 9mg

This recipe originally appeared in Clean Eating Magazine. For more superfood recipes, visit cleaneating.com.

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