Summery, juicy vegan sun dried tomato pesto pasta salad packed with pine nuts, fresh basil and all the sun dried tomatoes!
This pasta salad is super easy to put together and makes the perfect side or lunch!
We all know pesto is one of lifes best sauces but have you ever tried sun dried tomato pesto? It takes it to a whole new level.
Sun dried tomatoes are packed with umami flavour, that rich, savoury yumminess that makes you want more and more.
The beauty of sun dried tomatoes is that the flavour and richness only intensifies after drying. Which makes them great for packing flavour into recipes.
You’ll want to use sun dried tomatoes in oil for this recipe – get good quality ones if you can.
That oil is packed with flavour, so don’t throw it out. You can add it to pasta sauces, dressings or marinades.
So what goes into sun dried tomato pesto?
- Sun dried tomatoes (in oil)
- Pine nuts
- Fresh basil
- Lemon juice
- Olive oil
- Chilli flakes (optional)
All you need to do is place all the ingredients into a food processor or blender until it turns into pesto!
How to make sun dried tomato pesto pasta:
Start by choosing your pasta type. You can use any type or short cut pasta for this – fusilli, macaroni, farfalle, penne. Just cook it according to packet instructions in some salted water.
Whilst the pasta is cooking make the pesto. Add the tomatoes, pine nuts, basil, lemon, salt, pepper and chilli flakes in a blender. Blitz until broken down then pour in the oil and continue to blitz.
Taste and season with extra salt and pepper if needed. I like adding chilli flakes for a bit of spice but you can leave this out if you want.
When the pasta is done, reserve a 1/4 cup of the pasta water. Drain and the return to the pan.
Add the pasta water and pesto and give it a good mix then serve. If you’re making this ahead of time store it in the fridge but leave it out for half an hour or so beforehand to come to room temperature.
It will be drier from the fridge so you can heat it up in them microwave with a splash of water if needed.
Ideas for eating this pasta salad:
- Add it to a buddha bowl
- Serve with a baked potato
- Serve as a side at a bbq
- Eat as it is – it makes a great lunch on the go!
For more pasta recipes you may enjoy these:
As always if you make this vegan sun dried tomato pesto pasta salad be sure to leave me a comment, rate this recipe and tag me on Instagram. I love seeing all your photos of my recipe recreations!
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- 350g short cut pasta
- 1 cup / 20g fresh basil
- 1/3 cup / 45g pine nuts
- 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 10 sun dried tomatoes, in oil
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Black pepper
- Pinch of dried chilli flakes
- 1/4 cup / 50ml olive oil
- Cook pasta according to packet instructions in salted water.
- Make the pesto whilst this cooks. Place the basil, pine nuts, sun dried tomatoes, nutritional yeast, lemon, garlic, salt and pepper in a food processor and blitz until the nuts have mostly broken down.
- Pour in the oil and continue to blend until smooth. Taste and season with extra salt and pepper if needed.
- Reserve 1/4 cup of pasta water before draining the pasta. Place drained pasta back into the saucepan, add the pesto, pasta water and stir.
- Serve and top with some extra chopped sun dried tomatoes and basil. Will keep for 2-3 days in the fridge in an air tight container but bring to room temperature before serving.
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