Pasta with Pistachio-Pecan Pesto

Pesto is everything! Just a spoonful of it can transform any meal and kick it up a notch. Meet Pasta with Pistachio-Pecan Pesto!

What’s that you say? You’ve only had store bought pesto? You’ve never made homemade pesto? Whhaaatttt…


If that’s the case, you have got to try making it at home! It’s fairly simple to whip up a batch in your handy-dandy food processor.

Pesto is traditionally made with basil (this is what makes it green), garlic, pine nuts, parmesan, and olive oil. However, you can really make pesto out of anything! You can use other greens (kale, parsley, arugula, etc.), other nuts (walnuts, almonds, peanuts, etc.), and other cheeses (aged cheddar, pecorino romano, parmigiano reggiano, etc.). The possibilities are endless!

Adding pesto to anything makes it taste that much better too. Add it to sandwiches, eggs, meats, seafood OR just spread it on anything flat, really.


This is how I made my Pasta with Pistachio-Pecan Pesto (say that ten times fast)… I used pistachios and pecans instead of pine nuts, considering I had a lot left over in my pantry. I added a little lemon zest to brighten up the pesto, then tossed it with some ziti, grilled chicken, and roasted broccoli. Holy pasta pesto! So good!

Also, I used three garlic cloves for this recipe, which I think is plenty. If you’re a vampire and don’t mind the effects of having less-than-desirable garlic breath, add more garlic then.


This is such a great meal, especially when you’re looking for something that’s simple to make after a busy day, but also comforting and healthy. Oh, and did I mention that it makes great leftovers too?

Pasta with Pistachio-Pecan Pesto

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Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 6-8
  • 1 lb. uncooked pasta (of your choice)
  • 2½ cups fresh basil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • ½ cup pistachios, shelled
  • ¼ cup pecans
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¾ cup parmesan
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • grilled chicken
  • roasted broccoli
  1. In the bowl of a food processor, start by processing the pistachios, pecans, and garlic. Add fresh basil, salt, and pepper. While processor is running, slowly add the olive oil through the processor's feed tube. Process until it's pureed. Add parmesan and lemon zest. Set aside if using right away, but otherwise, place in refrigerator in an airtight container.
  2. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, according to the manufacturer's directions. Drain and set aside to cool a bit.
  3. Place pasta in a large bowl. Mix in pesto. Toss in grilled chicken and roasted broccoli.

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