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Pesto & Cherry Tomato Pasta Salad

pesto pasta salad

I love the smell of fresh basil, especially in the summer. With our summer garden in full bloom, we have hundreds of cherry tomatoes and huge barrels of fresh basil just waiting to be used. One of my favorite things to do when I’m hungry is walk out to the garden, grab a giant basil leave, wrap it around a freshly pick cherry tomato and eat away.

With the large quantity of basil growing I’ve been making Pesto almost weekly. It can be refrigerated for weeks and frozen for months. This Pesto & Cherry Tomato Pasta Salad includes all the freshness of summer produce and can be the perfect addition to your summer cookout! This is my family’s favorite pasta dish to date! My girls ask for it all the time.

Here’s how to make this delicious summer salad:

Pesto & Cherry Tomato Pasta Salad – Serves 6

{For the Pesto}

  • 5 giant handfuls of fresh basil
  • 3/4 cup pine nuts
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • Juice of two large lemons
  • 2-3 teaspoons kosher salt
  • about 15 grinds of freshly ground pepper

Place all ingredients in a food processor or high-speed blender and mix on high until all ingredients are smooth. You may have to scrape down the sides to make sure all ingredients are mixed in. Store pesto in an airtight container and keep in the fridge until ready to serve.

{Remaining Ingredients}

  • 1 lb bag bow-tie pasta
  • 3 cups cherry tomatoes (halved)
  • salt & pepper to taste

Boil pasta according to directions on the bag. Drain pasta through a colander and run cold water through the until pasta until completely cooled off. Once pasta is cooled, shake the pasta in the colander to remove any excess water. Dump the pasta in a large bowl. Pour in pesto and fold through until the past is coated. Next, fold in cherry tomatoes. The pasta can be kept at room temp for up to run hour until ready to serve, or stored in the fridge. Garnish with shavings of fresh parmesan or a sprinkle of feta for serving.


pesto pasat salad1

7 Responses

  1. Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) said on June 17, 2013 at 1:10 pm

    I am so with you on the fresh basil. My absolute summer time favorite! This looks amazing!

  2. Estela - Weekly Bite said on June 17, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    Thanks Sarena! I don’t think I will ever get tired of basil 🙂

  3. lisa said on June 17, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    how may does it serve?

    • Estela - Weekly Bite said on June 18, 2013 at 8:09 am

      Hi Lisa,
      This dish serves 6 🙂

  4. Grannydeb said on June 19, 2013 at 4:16 am

    This was a great dinner !

  5. Kelly said on June 19, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    I made this for dinner last night and got my partner to try it also, he is not very adventurous when it comes to new tastes but we both loved it and just wanted to let you know how tasty we thought it was 🙂

    • Estela - Weekly Bite said on June 20, 2013 at 8:17 am

      Hi Kelly!
      I am so happy you both enjoyed it!