Last Updated on April 26, 2023 by Chef Mireille
Elevate your pasta game with this Spinach Pesto Pasta with Chickpeas that combines the rich, savory taste of chickpeas with the fresh, herby goodness of spinach pesto. Whether you’re a busy professional or a home cook looking to impress, this recipe is sure to satisfy your cravings for something both healthy and delicious.
I love pesto, but don’t make it very often because basil leaves are so tender and go bad so quickly. Often times I want to make pesto and buy a bunch of basil, but sometimes my schedule gets busy and then within a day or two, the leaves are starting to turn black. Spinach is much stronger and can stay in the refrigerator for several days before I get around to making the pesto.
Since I love pesto so much, I always buy a big bunch of spinach whenever I go grocery shopping. First of all, I love spinach and use it in so many different ways – everything from rice to smoothies, but I love to make Spinach Pesto.
Although basil pesto is the classic Italian version, modern pesto’s can be made from a variety of green herbs and vegetables like spinach, cilantro, parsley, kale and beet greens. Here is my version of Spinach Pesto and how to incorporate it into a quick and easy Vegetarian pasta dinner. In addition to pasta, pesto is such a versatile condiment. The store bought versions are usually more dry, but in this wetter version that I make, you can use it as salad dressing, pizza base (instead of Marinara) and a dip with fried foods like this Fried Ravioli or Italian Chickpea Fritters
Spinach Pesto Pasta
- Pesto Ingredients:
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 head garlic peeled
- 4 cups spinach leaves
- 1/2 cup shelled pistacchios
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Pasta Ingredients:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large tomato chopped
- 1 sprig oregano leaves
- 15.5 oz. can chickpeas
- 3 cups cooked bowtie pasta
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- To make the pesto, combine garlic with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in an oven safe dish.
- Roast for 20 minutes, until golden brown.
- Combine roasted garlic with spinach, pistacchios, red pepper and salt in a food processor. Blend to chop.
- While the processor is running, slowly add the remaining olive oil until well blended.
- To make the pasta, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Add tomato and oregano. Saute for about 5 minutes, until tomatoes are softened.
- Add 2/3 cup of the pesto and fry for a few minutes.
- Add chickpeas and cooked pasta. Toss to combine.
- Adjust salt and pepper, as necessary.
- Add cheese and toss to combine.
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Rafeeda - The Big Sweet Tooth
What an innovative pesto with spinach… basil goes spoiled plus is pricey here too…
yes thats why I always prefer to use spinach
Sharmila - The Happie Friends Potpourri Corner
So much healthy way to include spinach in pasta.
Renu Agrawal Dongre
This is one healthy bowl…spinach, chickpeas and pesto……lovely
Thanks glad you like it
That is an interesting pesto with spinach mir . looks so yummy and love the bright green color of it. How wonderful they look after combining to the pasta..very nicely presented as well..
Thanks so much!
I don’t roast garlic when making pesto. Will try it next time. Even I make spinach pesto more often than the ones with basil. Pesto pasta looks good
The roasted garlic adds an awesome flavor profile
This is exactly how I love my pasta with pesto, chickpeas. I usually use store bought pesto, but I’m in love with your spinach pesto recipe. Will have to try it out some time soon.
Thanks yes I actually have started preferring the spinach version to the basil one
Love this pesto. Someone please tell my kids that it is ok to eat garbanzo beans in pasta. They feel it is not typical italian to eat garbanzo beans. Not sure where they got that.
It’s not typical in Italian restaurants here but is quite common in Italy – Like all cuisines, Italian food is regional and most of the food we get here is Sicilian and southern Italian
Spinach pesto is a great idea . I am
Not fond of spinach but this is something that I would love . The pesto with pistachios is a great idea and I am definitely trying this soon . The clicks are tempting Mir .
pistacchios are a little bit more cost effective here than the pine nuts so that’s why I like using them in the pesto
I love the picture and the way it looks so inviting!..such a lovely combination..i am yet to try with spinach, must do sometime..
I am sure you will love the spinach version
The spinach pesto looks delicious. I love the addition of chickpeas in your bow tie pasta, makes it a wholesome and filling dish.
thanks – yes makes the perfect one pot meal
Spinach pesto sounds fabulous and simply love here the addition of chickpeas, such a filling dish to enjoy without any guilt.
absolutely a guilt free vegetarian meal and make it even healthier if you use whole grain pasta
Pasta looks soo good Mir. Am going to make this dish this weekend. Thanks for sharing
You must let me know how you liked it
You have come up with a healthy and nutritious bowl of pasta here.
thanks – yep this makes the perfect one pot meal
A falvourful bowl of pasta. I have never used pistachois and spinach for making pesto. need to try
yes its also a more cost effective pesto as the pine nuts used in traditional pesto are so expensive
That is such a vibrant pesto. Looks so good and I am sure it tasted amazing..
yes its myfavorite pesto to make