This Creamy Pesto Pasta Bake sure is healthy, but doesn’t taste like it at all! It is also Gluten Free and Nut Free, so everyone can enjoy.
*** Don’t forget to check out the end of this post for a GIVEAWAY with Banza! ***
Do you have a favorite herb? Mine is definitely fresh Basil. It has such a potent and unique flavor and just screams spring/summer to me! You can add it to fresh salads, pizzas, salsas…I even like to walk on the wild side and add it to smoothies sometimes.
My absolute favorite way to use Basil is in fresh pesto, though. I can down that stuff! When I first went vegan I was a little disappointed because most pesto is made with cheese (and lots of oil…), but luckily I’ve been able to find a way to re-create it’s deliciousness without the dairy!
So when my friends Jasmine and Chris of Sweet Simple Vegan and I decided to team up to create a pasta recipe, I knew I had to incorporate pesto in some way. And thus this totally creamy, totally healthy pesto pasta bake was born. It’s also gluten free AND nut free, so even your friends with allergies can enjoy it. You may not want to share it though 😉
Pesto + Sundried Tomatoes + Portobello Mushrooms + Avocado? Sounds pretty darn perfect to me.
Speaking of Jasmine and Chris, they created an epic Vegan Ravioli Stuffed Lasagna for you all! It’s also oil-free, and if you are able to find some GF pasta, I’m sure you could make it gluten free as well. Check out the recipe here, or you can watch their epic recipe video here!
Anyways, back to pesto. This recipe is surprisingly simple, and aside from the Hemp Seeds, you most likely already have everything in your pantry. If you don’t I would highly recommend these – I’ve been using them for the past year or so and have never been disappointed!
How could I almost forget?! I’m partnering with Banza, the creators of the BEST (in my opinion) gluten-free pasta out there on the market for a GIVEAWAY with all of you lovely people! I’ve been using their high protein chickpea pasta for several years now, and absolutely love it. If you live in the US and would like to win a case (6 boxes) for yourself, simply follow the instructions below. The winner will be announced on 6/5!
Okay, Okay. Let’s get on to cooking, shall we?
Creamy Pesto Pasta Bake with Sundried Tomatoes and Avocado (Vegan, Nut Free)
This Creamy Pesto Pasta Bake sure is healthy, but doesn't taste like it at all! It is also Gluten Free and Nut Free, so everyone can enjoy.
- 8 oz Gluten Free Pasta, I like Banza (or regular if not GF)
- 1 cup Russet Potato, peeled and diced into 1/2" pieces
- 2 cup Fresh Basil, plus more for garnish
- 2 cloves Garlic
- 1/2 cup Unsweetened Plant Milk
- Zest + Juice of one Lemon
- 1/2 of an Avocado
- 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp Nutritional Yeast, Divided
- 8 oz Baby Bella Mushrooms, sliced
- 1/2 cup Sundried Tomatoes, chopped (Trader Joe's has oil-free ones)
- 1 tbsp Hemp Seeds
- Heaping 1/4 tsp Salt
- Black Pepper, to taste
Bring a medium sized pot of water to a boil, add in the diced Potato, and boil for 10 minutes, or until tender. Drain.
In the meantime, add the Basil, Garlic, Plant Milk, and Lemon Juice + Zest into a food processor. Process until well combined.
Then, add in the Avocado, 1/4 cup of Nutritional Yeast, boiled Potatoes, and Salt/Pepper to taste. Blend until a creamy sauce forms. Set Aside.
Preheat your oven to 350F. Refill the same medium sized pot with water and bring to a boil, this time cooking and draining your pasta according to package instructions.
Add the sliced Baby Bella Mushrooms to a sautee pan with a splash of water and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. Then, add in the Sundried Tomatoes and cook for another 5-10 minutes, or until the mushrooms are fully cooked and the Tomatoes are rehydrated. Feel free to add water to the pan in 1-2 tbsp increments if things start to stick.
Add the Pesto Sauce and Cooked Pasta to the pan and stir well.
Transfer the Pasta to a oven-safe dish (I used a pie pan) and spread out evenly. Sprinkle 1 tbsp each of Nutritional Yeast and Hemp Seeds over the top of the pasta.
Bake at 350F for 10 minutes. Garnish with additional Basil and serve Immediately.
I made my own Hemp Milk by blending 1 1/2 tbsp of Hemp Seeds with 1/2 cup of water on high for 60 seconds; however, feel free to use whatever plant milk you have on hand!
Watch the Recipe Video for this Creamy Pesto Pasta Bake here:
If you’d like to save the deliciousness for later, feel free to Pin It on Pinterest using this image!