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Lentil and Basil Pesto Pasta


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Rate this recipe 4.3/5 (125 Votes)


  • For the Pesto:
  • 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves (reserve a few leaves for garnish)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1/2 cup cooked or canned green lentils, drained and rinsed
  • 3 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • For the Pasta:
  • 3 1/2 cups dry farfalle (bowtie) or other pasta
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup cooked or canned green lentils, rinsed and drained
  • Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • Extra Virgin Olive oil, for garnish
  • Parmesan cheese, for garnish


Servings 8


Step 1

1. In the bowl of food processor, add basil, garlic, pine nuts lentils, and lemon juice. Pulse, then add oil and puree. Add Parmesan cheese and process once more. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until "al dente." Drain and toss with one tablespoon of oil.

3. Heat remaining tablespoon of oil in saute pan while pasta is cooking. Add cherry tomatoes and cook just until heated through. Add lentils and season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and reserve.

4. Toss pasta, sautéed tomato mixture, and pesto in a large bowl.

5. Garnish with Parmesan cheese, basil, and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve immediately.

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