Creamy Ricotta Pesto Pasta Recipe: A Italian Dinner In 20 Minutes by Jan Mostrom

Creamy Ricotta Pesto Pasta Recipe: A Italian Dinner In 20 Minutes

I’ve been really trying to post some simple and simply delicious recipes that work for busy people. This ricotta pesto pasta recipe is a great one! The wonderfully creamy and delicious Italian pasta recipe with ricotta adds pesto for a nutty flavor that really hits the spot.

I made this pasta recipe with a gluten-free pasta, but any pasta shape or type will work. As always, don’t overcook your pasta or it becomes mushy and loses some of the wonderful texture that is layered into this meal.

To make this easy pasta dinner tonight you will need fresh basil, olive oil, garlic, Romano or Parmesan cheese, nuts (pecans, macadamia or pine nuts work well), salt, paste, ricotta and black pepper. Serve this 15-minute Italian dinner with a simple salad or side dish like broccolini for a wonderful easy meal tonight.

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Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 to 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 3 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more if needed
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/3 cup grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup roasted pecansmacadamia nuts or pine nuts
  • 1/2 - 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1 pound (16 ounces) pasta, cooked to al dente according to package directions (reserve 1 cup pasta water)
  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese

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Recipe Notes

  • Add some crushed red pepper flakes for a little kick.
  • For more flavor, toast the nuts in a dry skillet until fragrant. Be careful not to burn the nuts!
  • In a pinch, you could use store-bought basil pesto.
  • Store the pasta in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days.

Here's how to make it: 

  1. Put the fresh basil, cheeses, nuts and salt into a food processor or blender. Pulse to combine. Drizzle in the olive oil until you thin the pesto and it is blended together. Taste and add more salt and black pepper, to taste.
  2. Add the ricotta and pesto to the pasta in a bowl and toss to combine.
  3. Use a bit of the pasta water to thin the mixture, if desired, making sure to only add a bit at a time. Serve with crusty bread and a sprinkle of more Parmesan.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving

Calories: 778

Total Fat: 22.4g

Saturated Fat: 5.6g

Cholesterol: 26mg

Sodium: 403mg

Total Carbohydrate: 107.4g

Dietary Fiber: 11.9g

Total Sugars: 5.9g

Protein: 38.6g

Vitamin D: 0mcg

Calcium: 389mg

Iron: 9mg

Potassium: 257mg

Recipe cooking times, nutritional information and servings are approximate and provided for your convenience. However, 30Seconds is not responsible for the outcome of any recipe, nor may you have the same results because of variations in ingredients, temperatures, altitude, errors, omissions or cooking/baking abilities. This recipe has been analyzed by VeryWellFit. However, any nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and it is up to the individual to ascertain accuracy. To ensure image quality, we may occasionally use stock photography.

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