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Green Basil and Spinach Pesto Pasta

Green Basil and Spinach Pesto Pasta
Lunch, Side Dishes

Low Gi Recipe Logo

10 minutes
15 minutes


For the pesto

  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • ½ cup baby spinach leaves
  • ¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • ¼ cup extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ¼ cup pine nuts toasted
  • 1 garlic peeled
  • sea salt and ground black pepper pinch
  • 60 g parmesan cheese finely grated

For the pasta

  • 250 g pasta
  • 250 g cherry tomatoes
  • 60 g fresh rocket leaves
  • 150 g green beans halved
  • dried basil
  • cooked chicken or turkey. Leftover, cold


For the pesto

  • Put pine nuts and garlic clove in a blender or food processor and process until roughly chopped. Scrape down the sides with a small spatula. Add olive oil, parsley, basil, spinach leaves and a pinch of sea salt and pepper. Blend.
  • Pause the machine once or twice and scrape down the sides with the spatula to ensure even consistency. Process mixture until it becomes a smooth, gooey paste, adding any extra water if needed.
  • Scrape pesto into a bowl and stir through the grated Parmesan. Cover the bowl with cling film touching the surface of the pesto so it is not exposed to air to prevent oxidisation. Set aside until needed.

For the pasta

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Cook the pasta until al dente, adding the beans for the final two minutes so they blanch green. Drain and set aside.
  • To assemble the pasta, pour ½ of the pesto over the pasta. Place the cooked pasta and green beans in large bowl. Add the cherry tomatoes, leafy greens (and any other optional extras if needed).
  • Toss all ingredients together until it is covered with the pesto, adding a small amount of water if necessary to thin out the pesto in the pasta.
  • Plate onto a large serving dish, top with basil tips. Serve immediately slightly warm or refrigerate for later.
  • If the pasta needs more flavour, add a splash of lemon juice.


  • Any pasta is low GI if cooked al dente.
  • Add any leftover white proteins such as cold turkey, chicken or prawns.
  • Keep the pesto in a jar in the fridge for 3-4 days, using a thin film of olive oil
    on top to prevent oxidisation or alternatively, store in portions in the freezer.
  • Don’t have beans? Use 1 cup of frozen peas.

Please note the serving size listed is to be used as a guide only. Consider your own individual nutrient and carbohydrate requirements and adjust the serving size as required. If you are unsure of your requirements consult an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD) for personalises advice.

Nutritional information (per serve)

Carbohydrates: 25g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 6.5g | Sodium: 262mg | Potassium: 722mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 4g
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