Are you ready to up your pasta game? This healthy dairy free pistachio pesto is packed with simple whole ingredients and is a perfect pesto sauce to compliment your favorite pasta noodles.
It’s finally warming up here in Minnesota. Okay, not really, but it has been above zero and sunny the past week so it’s making me feel like spring is actually around the corner (insert happy dance)! Because of this, I have a new urge to make colorful spring dishes! This pistachio pesto pasta is vibrant green and just screams spring vibes.
This pesto recipe is perfect for those days you don’t want to eat a salad but still want to get your daily veggies in. It is also super simple to make! The longest part of this recipe is waiting for the water to boil for your pasta.
Traditional pesto, which originated from Italy, calls for basil, pine nuts and parmesan cheese. This unconventional pistachio pesto uses ingredients like pistachios, spinach, broccoli, avocado and garlic that make this dish delicious, creamy, and dairy free!
Ingredients in Dairy Free Pistachio Pesto Pasta
- Pasta: Use whatever pasta you prefer but I use gluten free pasta.
- Pistachios: Make sure that you shell your pistachios or buy them already shelled. The pistachios give this dish that delicious nutty flavor that pesto is known for.
- Broccoli: You don’t taste the broccoli much in this dish but it is a great way to sneak more veggies into your diet.
- Spinach: The spinach is another healthy ingredient added to this pesto and gives that vibrant green color.
- Avocado: The avocado adds a delicious creamy texture.
- Lime: A touch of fresh lime juice.
- Garlic: Two cloves of minced garlic is added in this recipe.
- Olive oil: The olive oil can be substituted for water if you are avoiding oil.
- Water: Feel free to adjust the amount of water added if you want the pesto to be thicker or runnier.
- Salt & pepper: Adjust the amount of salt and pepper to taste preference.
How To Make Pistachio Pesto Pasta
Step 1: Cook pasta as directed on the packaging.
Step 2: In the meantime, make the pesto by first blanching the broccoli. To do this, bring a medium pot of water to boil. Place a bowl of ice water nearby. Then blanch the broccoli for 1 minute, until the broccoli turns bright green. Transfer the broccoli with a slotted spoon and place it in the ice water. Then drain and pat the broccoli dry and set aside.
Step 3: Place the shelled pistachios in the food processor. Blend on high for a few seconds, until the pistachios are broken down into fine pieces.
Step 4: Add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor and blend until combined and pesto is creamy.
Step 5: Toss the Pesto with the cooked pasta and serve as desired. Season to taste.
Tips For Making Pistachio Pesto
Consistency: Feel free to adjust the amount of water added in this recipe. I suggest the amounts I do based on my texture preference for the pesto but it can be adjusted depending on how thick or runny you’d like the pesto to be.
Blanching the broccoli: To save space and time, the fresh broccoli is blanched in a pot of boiling water. This softens the broccoli so it is easier to blend into the pesto. To save time, you could microwave the broccoli with a little bit of water for a few seconds to soften it.
Food processor or blender: I use my food processor to blend the pesto together. Make sure to use a food processor or high speed blender so the pistachios are able to be broken down into fine pieces.
More Dinner Recipes:
- Spicy Sesame Peanut Zucchini Noodles
- Broccoli Alfredo Pasta
- Baked Tuscan Chicken
- Easy Spicy Honey Garlic Shrimp
- Baked Lemon Pepper Salmon with Brussels Sprouts
Tried this recipe?
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Healthy Dairy Free Pistachio Pesto Pasta
- 1 lb bag of gluten free pasta (or you can use regular)
For the Pesto:
- 1 cup broccoli
- ⅔ cup pistachios shelled
- ½ cup spinach
- ¼ of an avocado
- Juice of ½ Lime
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 4 tbsp olive oil*
- ¼ cup water
- ¼ tsp salt to taste
- ¼ tsp pepper
- Cook pasta as directed on the packaging.
- In the meantime, make the pesto by first blanching the broccoli. To do this, bring a medium pot of water to boil. Place a bowl of ice water nearby. Then blanch the broccoli for 1 minute, until the broccoli turns bright green. Transfer the broccoli with a slotted spoon and place it in the ice water. Then drain and pat the broccoli dry and set aside.
- Place the shelled pistachios in the food processor. Blend on high for a few seconds, until the pistachios are broken down into fine pieces.
- Add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor and blend until combined and pesto is creamy.
- Toss the Pesto with the cooked pasta and serve as desired. Season to taste.
- *If avoiding using olive oil, you can use water instead. Feel free to add or subtract the amount of water based on your preference on how thick you want the pesto to be.