Dinner/Mains

August 4, 2021

Ricotta Pea Pesto Pasta

Ricotta Pea Pesto Pasta is an easy weeknight meal that I’ve been making for years. I start to crave it in March, as I begin to plant peas in my garden and see the green sprouts of seedlings popping up out of the ground. It only takes a few ingredients and about 15 minutes to put together this pasta - a nice, quick meal to get on the table on a busy night.

Make the ricotta pea pesto sauce in a food processor while your pasta is cooking. Make sure to reserve about one cup of the pasta cooking water before draining the pasta. You’ll use the reserved cooking water to help the sauce evenly coat your pasta, and ensure that your sauce becomes nice and creamy.

This Ricotta Pea Pesto sauce is not just for pasta, though! It also makes a great dip for crackers, or a hearty appetizer when spread on crostini. But paired with pasta, it’s a fast and complete light meal (green peas are a great source of plant protein!). You could make it a heartier dinner by adding additional cooked protein, such as grilled chicken, salmon, or shrimp.

Make this Ricotta Pea Pesto for dinner this week, and use the extra time you saved in the kitchen to get outside an enjoy the longer days of spring!

Ingredients assembled for Ricotta Pea Pesto Pasta
Assemble your ingredients.

Making the ricotta pea pesto in a food processor
While pasta is cooking, make the ricotta pea pesto sauce in a food processor.

Stirring ricotta pea pesto into hot cooked pasta
Add the ricotta pea pesto sauce to the cooked pasta, using some of the reserved pasta cooking water to help coat the pasta and make the sauce extra creamy.

Ricotta Pea Pesto Pasta served in a grey floral bowl
Serve Ricotta Pea Pesto Pasta garnished with parmesan cheese. Cheers!

Original publication date: March 25, 2021

Ricotta Pea Pesto Pasta

Ricotta Pea Pesto Pasta is an easy weeknight meal that I’ve been making for years. It only takes a few ingredients and about 15 minutes to put together this pasta dish.

Author:

Kira Freed - The Joyful Plateful

Prep:

5

min

cook:

15

min

total:

20

min

Ingredients

8 oz. frozen peas

1 cup whole milk ricotta

1/2 cup prepared basil pesto

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/4 tsp. ground black pepper

Juice of 1/2 lemon

16 oz. pasta of your choice

Instructions

  1. Prepare pasta according to package directions. Before draining, reserve 1 cup of pasta cooking water.
  2. While pasta is cooking, prepare the ricotta pea pesto sauce. Place frozen peas in a microwave-safe medium-sized bowl with 2 Tbsp water. Cover loosely, and microwave about 3 minutes to thoroughly defrost peas. Drain excess water.
  3. In the bowl of a food processor, place thawed peas, ricotta, basil pesto, salt, pepper, and lemon juice. Pulse until ingredients are combined, leaving a few small pieces of peas visible.
  4. Once pasta is cooked and drained, return cooked pasta to hot pot, and add the pea pesto sauce. Stir to coat pasta, gradually adding in reserved pasta cooking water to thin the sauce and help it coat the pasta. (This usually takes about 1/2 cup for me.)
  5. Serve hot, garnished with parmesan cheese (optional).
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May 24, 2022
Elizabeth
I don't normally comment on recipes but this has got to be the best thing I've ever made. It came together pretty easy and made five meals - perfect for meal prep for the week. I already can't wait to make it again.
January 22, 2022
Sherry Ruiter
I love this section!!!!!