This Silly Green Alphabet Pasta is a fun way to turn pasta night into something green! And the best part is that it is truly a meal in a bowl. I served this dish with a side of white bean soup, some crusty bread and dinner was done. For the pasta, I take whole wheat alphabet pasta, classic kid food, then I doctored it up with some light pesto sauce, sweet sun dried tomatoes and a few sneaky shreds of spinach folded in as well. But since the pasta is so green, you really barely even notice all that super healthy wilted spinach! This pasta is a must try for kids, but adults will adore it as well. And if the pesto flavor is too bold for your kids, you can tone it down a bit – merge the “pesto” into more of a green aioli. Give this bowl a whirl and try to get your kids to love green!
Pesto Recipe. You can really use any pesto recipe you’d like. On a super busy night you may be able to find a few pre-made pestos from the store that are fresh and delicious. (Whole Foods even sells a bagged vegan brand!) I usually use this recipe for my vegan pesto pasta. I also love this lemon leek pesto recipe or this spicy rockstar pesto recipe. Both vegan.
If you need a fast pesto recipe - try this: handful of fresh basil, 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/3 cup lemon juice, 2 Tbsp agave syrup, salt/pepper to taste and garlic paste to taste. I also add in a scoop of nutritional yeast and a handful of walnuts to mellow out all the vibrant flavors.
Silly Green Pesto Alphabet Pasta
6 cups whole wheat alphabet pasta (1 box)
2 cups pesto sauce
2 cups fresh spinach, chopped into thin strips
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes
pepper to taste
1/4 – 1 cup nutritional yeast (optional)
extra EVOO for drizzling
fresh basil garnish
1. Cook your pasta, drain. Toss with a drizzle of EVOO. And toss with a few spoonfuls of nutritional yeast (optional).
2. Toss warm pasta with prepared pesto sauce. Start with a few spoonfuls and toss. Add a spoonful at a time until your pasta is coated the way you like it.
3. Fold in the fresh spinach – it will naturally wilt. Also fold in the sun dried tomatoes. They will plump up as they absorb the pesto and steam from the warm pasta.
4. Serve warm or place in warm oven until ready to be served. Top with fresh basil just before serving. More nutritional yeast sprinkled on top is yummy too.