Farfalle with Mint Walnut Pesto

Making your own pesto is just about as easy as it gets – ours uses a fragrant mix of fresh mint and basil, while walnuts offer an omega-3-rich alternative to pine nuts!
Farfalle with Mint Walnut Pesto

Photo: Ryan Szulc

By Julie O'Hara

Serves: 4
Hands-On Time: 20 minutes
Total Time:  25 minutes


  • 1/2 packed cup fresh basil (with stems)
  • 1/2 packed cup fresh mint (with stems)
  • 1/4 cup toasted unsalted walnuts
  • 3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper, plus additional to taste
  • 1 1/2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 8 oz whole-wheat farfalle (TRY: Hodgson Mill Whole Wheat Bow Tie Pasta)
  • 2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
  • 9 oz frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and quartered
  • Sea salt, to taste


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, prepare pesto: To a food processor, add basil, mint, walnuts, Parmesan and 1/4 tsp pepper. Pulse until roughly chopped, five to seven times, scraping down bowl as needed. Add oil and lemon juice and process for 10 to 15 seconds or until a thick, slightly chunky pesto forms. (NOTE: Try to not process to a smooth paste, keep it slightly chunky.)
  2. To boiling water, add pasta and cook al dente according to package directions. Before draining pasta, ladle about 1/2 cup cooking water into a heat-proof measuring cup and set aside. Return drained pasta to pot and add tomatoes, artichokes and pesto. Place on low heat and stir to combine. If more moisture is desired, add reserved pasta cooking water 1 tbsp at a time to achieve desired texture. Heat until vegetables are heated through, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and additional pepper.

Nutrients per serving (1 3/4 cups pesto pasta): Calories: 345, Total Fat: 13 g, Sat. Fat: 2 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4 g, Carbs: 52 g, Fiber: 12 g, Sugars: 4 g, Protein: 13 g, Sodium: 137 mg, Cholesterol: 3 mg

See Also Avocado Pesto
  • Gemma

    Hi just to let you know the addition of Parmesan stops this dish from being properly classified as vegetarian.

    • Katie

      Did you mean to say “vegan” instead? If not, I’m confused where you get your information from, as it seems vegetarian to me. I wasn’t aware there was a sub-set of vegetarians that consider cheeses to be meat, but I guess you learn something new every day.

      • Caitlin

        Actually Gemma is right. Parmesan cheese is made using calf rennet, an enzyme from the stomach of a calf.

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