Creamy Pesto Vegetarian Pasta Recipe

It’s winter and for us that means lots of creamy, cheesy, pasta dishes and this week we’ve had a few already and more planned.  But it’s good year round! This creamy pesto dish is so easy you can make it in about 30-minutes and substitute whatever veggies you have on hand or are growing out in the garden.

You can even add meat if you like.  It lends itself very well to the addition of chicken (boil in salted water or chicken stock and then shred or cut into bite-sized pieces before adding to the pasta) for you meat-eaters.

Recipe: Creamy Pesto Vegetarian Bow Tie Pasta Dish
I make mine meat-free, but you can certainly add meat if you like. So easy and delicious, this is best eaten immediately and not held over.
Yield: 6
Prep Time: 
Cooking Time: 
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Ingredients
  • 15 oz bow tie pasta
  • 1 T olive oil
  • ½ pd fresh asparagus (washed, trimmed, and cut into 2" pieces)
  • 1 yellow pepper (seeded and cut into ⅛" slices)
  • 1 small zucchini, trimmed, and cut into ¼-inch half moons
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 5 oz (3/4 c) prepared pesto
  • 5 oz heavy whipping cream
  • 1 Roma tomato (seeded and chopped)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3 T fresh Parmesan, grated (optional)
Instructions
  1. In a large pot of boiling water, cook the pasta according to the directions on the package (generally 7-9 minutes). Drain and keep warm.
  2. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the asparagus and yellow pepper and cook until the pepper is translucent (about 5 minutes)
  3. Add the garlic and zucchini. Cook for 2 minutes until the zucchini softens.
  4. Stir in the pesto and cream and heat just until it reaches the boiling point but don't allow it to boil.
  5. Remove from heat and gently stir in the tomatoes and salt.
  6. Toss the creamy pesto vegetable sauce with the warm pasta and top with grated Parmesan cheese if desired.
  7. Serve immediately.