Cake, Batter, and Bowl

Toasted Almond and Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Pasta

Main Dishes

Toasted Almond and Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Pasta

Toasted Almond and Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Pasta

Please don’t judge this recipe by the picture. It’s not the best looking pasta dish to begin with and my hopeless photography skills definitely don’t help do it any justice, but I can guarantee you that it’s worth making! I was recently asked whether I usually end up trying new recipes or cooking old favorites during the week. You can probably tell from my blog that I’m always trying new dishes or experimenting with flavor combinations, but there are a few pasta dishes that I crave often and make at least once a month. One is my peanut sauce pasta and another is this toasted almond and roasted red pepper pesto pasta. Both are very comforting dishes that are so good that I inevitably end up sneaking back to kitchen to eat more forkfuls over the pot….

This recipe comes together in 20 minutes, so it’s perfect for a quick weeknight meal. The pesto is made of shallots, garlic, toasted almonds, roasted red peppers, and tomato sauce. I threw the fresh basil in because we have an abundance of it in our little balcony herb garden right now, but I’ve also made the pasta without it, so you don’t need to buy a package of basil just for this recipe. Goat cheese is perfect on top because the creaminess balances nicely with the crunch of the almonds. So simple, but so good!

Toasted Almond and Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Pasta
Printable Recipe

Ingredients:
1 pound whole wheat fusilli pasta
1 1/2 cups (9 ounces) whole raw almonds
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup chopped shallots
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 12-ounce jars roasted red peppers, drained
1 1/2 cups of your favorite tomato sauce (I’m a fan of Prego)
12 fresh basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain the pasta in a colander, return it to the pot, and keep warm.

Place almonds on a cookie sheet and toast for 10 minutes at 350ºF or until almonds are golden brown.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil over medium heat and sauté shallots for 5 to 7 minutes, or until soft. Add garlic and sauté one additional minute.

Place toasted almonds, shallot mixture, red peppers, tomato sauce, basil, red pepper flakes, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until a smooth pesto forms. Toss pesto with pasta in a large pot until well mixed. Place pasta on serving dishes and garnish by sprinkling goat cheese over each serving. Makes 6 servings.

Nutrition: 489 calories, 24.8g fat, 11.8g fiber, 17.7g protein per serving
Cost: $1.28 per serving

Pumpkin Pasta Bake

So, it’s time to spill the beans on a little secret – I’ve been training for a half marathon! I’ve resisted saying anything about it on my blog until now because I didn’t want to put any pressure on myself, but now that the race is over, I’m ready to share my...

Sweet Chili Apricot Shrimp Skewers over Israeli Couscous

Apolinaras really enjoyed the last Israeli couscous dish I made. In fact, he said it would have been a 10 if I hadn’t included the spinach in the salad, haha. He snuck another box into our cart at Trader Joe’s recently, which I thought was pretty cute, and since he’s...

Asparagus, Mushroom, Spinach, and Chicken Lasagna with Goat Cheese Sauce

Dinner party time! Shannon, Elina, and I decided to follow up our Spanish tapas party with a spring themed feast. Shannon rocked the appetizer course with a radish and polenta masterpiece and Elina’s scrumptious lemon strawberry shortcakes were the perfect sweet...

Orange Roasted Chicken

Time for part 2 of our New Zealand adventure (you can check out part 1 here)! After visiting Rotorua, we drove down to see Lake Taupo, the largest lake in New Zealand, which fills a caldera created by a huge volcanic eruption, and the Huka Waterfalls. Taupo is a...

Corn and Cheddar Polenta Cheesecakes

I hope you’re all having a lovely holiday weekend! I’m in Iowa right now visiting my parents and so far have squeezed in a few nice runs with my Dad (with some challenging hills - yes, Iowa does have them!) and some birthday shopping with my mom. It’s just been so...

Avocado Chicken Cakes

I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend! Ours was very relaxing. I finally found our ice cream maker and whipped up a yummy strawberry-mango sorbet. We also had a date at Costco (Am I the only one that considers going to Costco together a date?), and came home...

Moroccan Stuffed Acorn Squash

Well it’s somehow November, which I’m in denial about, but the good news is that it’s finally time to share squash recipes! I actually buy winter squash out of season occasionally (yep, I’m a bad food blogger...) because sometimes I crave it even in the middle of the...

Indian Spiced Chicken and Potato Cakes

Whew, what a week! We moved and are finally mostly unpacked, although the guest bedroom is still a bit of a disaster and we need to go shopping for a few accessories (rugs, mirrors, etc). The most important room is completely organized and fully functional already...