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This Creamy Avocado Pesto Pasta is the ultimate healthy comfort food recipe! It’s made in just 20 minutes with 9 simple ingredients, yet is packed with so much flavor. Enjoy for a quick lunch, healthy dinner, or even date nights in!
This is one of our favorite meals to enjoy on a busy weeknight. It comes together in no time and the addition of avocado makes this pesto unbelievably creamy. When we find avocados on sale at the market, this is one recipe we always go back to!
Key Ingredients You’ll Need
- Ripe Avocado: Hass avocados work best for this recipe. They’re super creamy, loaded with vitamin C, minerals fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids. Before using, make sure they are extra ripe and creamy! If needed, check out these clever ways to quickly ripen avocados at home.
- Nutritional Yeast: Adds a cheesy flavor to the pesto without any dairy! Note that brewer’s yeast and nutritional yeast are not the same and cannot be used interchangeably. These ingredients are very different!
- Olive Oil: We used the classic olive oil, but you can use another neutral oil such as avocado oil.
- Garlic: Fresh, raw garlic cloves are ideal in pesto. We prefer extra garlic in our pesto, but you can use less depending on your preference.
- Lemon Juice: A squeeze of fresh lemon juice in pesto helps brighten all of the flavors in this pesto recipe. We recommend using freshly squeezed lemon juice over store-bought lemon juice, but I think they may be obvious!
- Basil: It’s very important to make pesto with fresh basil leaves. Dried basil just simply doesn’t cut it here – trust us on this one!
- Walnuts: These nuts are an excellent source of healthy fats and help make this avocado pesto as creamy as possible. If desired, you can also replace these walnuts with pine nuts or almonds.
- Pasta: We used our favorite gluten-free pasta, but you are welcome to use your favorite pasta. You can even use a low carb pasta option such as zucchini noodles, kelp noodles, or spaghetti squash.
- Food Processor: If you don’t own a food processor, a blender would also do the trick, but pulse as you blend to make sure you don’t over-process it.
- Large Pot: If you’re in the market for new pots and pans, we recommend Caraway Home!
- Large Bowl: Looking for a mixing bowl set? Here is one we recommend.
How to Make Avocado Pesto
- Prepare the avocado pesto. In a food processor, add in the ripe avocados, nutritional yeast, olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons of water. Process until smooth.
- Add remaining ingredients. Pulse again until it reaches your desired consistency – you can make this as smooth or as chunky as you’d like. We prefer ours a bit chunky.
- Add additional water. If needed, pulse in additional water to thin out the sauce, if needed.
How to Make Avocado Pesto Pasta
- Cook the pasta. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, then add the pasta. Begin to prepare the pasta according to package instructions or until al dente.
- Combine the cooked pasta and pesto. Once the pasta has cooked, drain it and transfer it back to the pot. Add in all of the avocado pesto sauce and mix with the hot pasta until uniform. Finally, stir in the sun-dried tomatoes and mix until well combined.
- Serve. Serve immediately while warm and creamy with desired toppings and sides!
We love to top our pasta with red pepper flakes, fresh herbs, and vegan parmesan cheese. You can also add in your favorite leafy greens, such as fresh arugula, baby spinach, or baby kale.
We also highly recommend pairing this avocado pesto pasta recipe with our easy vegan garlic bread or these garlic herb dinner rolls. The crunchy, garlicky texture compliments the creamy pasta so nicely and is just so dang tasty. You won’t regret it!
You can also add your favorite plant-based proteins such as Italian sausage,
More Ways to Use Avocado Pesto
We love this delicious sauce on vegan avocado pesto pasta, but that’s not the only way you can use it! Check out some of our top favorite ways to use pesto:
- Roasted Pesto Gnocchi
- 4-Ingredient Pesto Pinwheels
- Vegan Chicken Pesto Pizza (5-Ingredients!)
- Baked Tofu and Pesto Sandwich
- Rainbow Pesto Hummus Sandwich
Once combined, this avocado pesto pasta dish will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Store leftovers in an airtight container, preferably glass for optimal freshness.
If you’re making this avocado pesto pasta for meal prep, we recommend storing the avocado pesto and the pasta and sun-dried tomatoes separately. Then when ready to eat, combine the two for the best creamy texture.
No, regular pesto is not typically made with avocado. Instead, it’s made creamy with pine nuts, extra virgin olive oil, and parmigiano-reggiano (parmesan cheese). If you’re craving a classic pesto dish, feel free to swap this avocado pesto recipe with our delicious, basic vegan pesto.
Yes, if you are allergic to nuts, feel free to omit the walnuts entirely or replace them with unsalted sunflower seeds.
If you’ve ever made homemade guacamole or this easy avocado and corn salad, you’ll know that avocados brown quickly! This happens when the flesh of the avocados are exposed to oxygen and is the simple process of oxidation.
The key to keeping your avocado pesto from turning brown is to expose it to oxygen as little as possible. You can store the pesto in an airtight jar or tightly sealed with plastic wrap. This will help keep the avocado pesto fresh looking for up to 3 days.
Yes! This homemade pesto pasta can be reheated. It is creamiest on the first day, but it can still be enjoyed the next day. If needed, loosen it up with a splash of water, vegetable broth, or more avocado pesto. This pasta will heat best on the stovetop or in the microwave.
More Creamy Pasta Recipes You May Enjoy:
- Easy Garlic and Herb Pasta (30-Minutes) – a simple classic everyone will love.
- Easy One-Pot Pasta – one of our absolute favorites to make when we’re short on time and don’t want to wash dishes!
- Easy Vegan Pasta Primavera – loaded with fresh veggies, cashew cream, and hearty noodles.
- Creamy One-Pot Taco Pasta (30-Minutes) – everything you love about tacos and pasta combined into one dish.
- One-Pot Vegan Hamburger Helper (Cheeseburger Pasta) – exactly like the classic Hamburger Helper, yet vegan!
- Instant Pot Pasta e Fagioli (aka Pasta and Beans) – made with just 10 simple ingredients and Cavatelli pasta.