Loaded Pesto Pasta Shells

Ahhh Pesto! My favourite flavour, always has been, always will be!!
A lot of shop bought pesto contains animal products such as milk, cheese and sometimes even egg and yogurt, along with a whole bunch of preservatives and acidity regulators. Why?! Using animal products is cheaper than using fresh, quality ingredients. When the funny thing is, you can buy the ingredients cheaper than a jar and make it twice over. It's a lot healthier to make your own and it only takes around 10 minutes.

In this recipe I used large durum wheat pasta, I usually opt for wholewheat pasta due to the nutritional value. But what can I say, I couldn't resist the novelty of having giant pasta for the day! Go for whatever pasta you fancy at the time. I loved stuffing the shells with the fresh green vegetables used in this recipe - it was delicious!

Serves 4



  • 200g fresh basil
  • 50g spinach
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts - toasted
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 3-4 tbsp water - plus more if needed


  • 500g large durum wheat pasta shells
  • 1 red onion
  • 75g sugar snap peas
  • 65g asparagus
  • 60g tenderstem broccoli
  • 110g cherry tomatoes
  • 50g kale
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp coconut oil



1. Toast the pine nuts in a dry pan for 5-7 minutes until light brown and fragrant, then let cool
2. Put all of the ingredients into a food processor and whizz until you are left with a smooth consistency


1. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil with a drizzle of olive oil and cook the pasta according to the packet instructions.
2. Dice the onion and mince the garlic, add the coconut oil to a frying pan, once the oil has melted, add the onions and garlic to the pan, fry for 2-3 minutes
3. Slice the asparagus and tenderstem broccoli into inches, discarding the bottom as this will be too tough, add to the pan with onions and garlic along with the sugar snap peas, I like the leave them whole, but if you want to slice them, now is the time to do it. Fry all of these together on a low heat for 10 minutes, adding water to the pan if they begin to stick
4. Now half your cherry tomatoes and put them in the frying pan along with the kale, cook these for 2 minutes, add a sprinkle of salt and take off the heat
5. In a large bowl, add your drained pasta, fried veg and pesto, mix well until everything is incorporated together. 

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