Whole Wheat Penne with Pea and Arugula Pesto

Pesto is one of my favorite pasta sauces. I love exploring with different ingredients, and discovering new variations. This pesto is bright, beautiful, and bold. Okay, so I might have gotten a little carried away with the "B's" but, it is so true. Try this recipe next time you find yourself with a craving for pesto, or even with a pasta salad for your next BBQ.


  • 1 lb. Whole Wheat Penne
  • 1 1/2 Cups Frozen Peas, Defrosted
  • 3 Cups Baby Arugula
  • 1 Cup Fresh Basil Leaves
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, Peeled
  • 1/2 Cup Walnuts, Toasted
  • 2 tsp, Fresh Lemon Zest
  • 3/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp. Kosher Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, Grated


  • Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees F.
  • Arrange the walnuts on a baking sheet, and place them in the oven until toasted. About 5-7 minutes. Let them cool.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, stirring occasionally, about 8-`10 minutes.
  • Reserve about 1/2 a cup of pasta water. Drain and place into a serving bowl.
  • Place the toasted walnuts, parmesan cheese, and lemon zest into the food processor, mix together until combined. Then add the peas, arugula,basil, salt, and pepper into a food processor.
  • Blend together until smooth. With the food processor still running add the olive oil slowly until well combined.
  • Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed.
  • Pour the pesto over the Penne and toss together until well coated.
  • Add the pasta water if needed to thin out the sauce.
  • Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Serve.