Recipe: Pasta with Pesto, Potatoes and Green Beans

This next recipe is a traditional way of eating pesto pasta in northern Italy and is the epitome of a one pot meal.  It’s perfect for weeknights as it’s super quick and easy.  Cooking everything together in one pot creates a starchy water that you use to make a creamy pesto sauce.  You can use store bought pesto or you can follow my pesto recipe here.  Let’s jump right into it!

Grab about a handful of french or string beans and about ten baby potatoes.  Rinse them well under running water.  Make sure all the dirt is off the potatoes.

Pesto, Potatoes, Green Bean Pasta1Measure a heaping 2 cups of pasta.  I just filled a 2-cup Pyrex measuring cup all the way to the top.  For the pasta, I used fusilli but you can use whatever you have on hand.

Pesto, Potatoes, Green Bean Pasta2

Cut the baby potatoes in half.  Cut off the ends of the green beans and then cut them in half.

Pesto, Potatoes, Green Bean Pasta

Fill a medium pot with water and place the potatoes inside.  Bring the water with potatoes to a boil and let it continue to boil for another 2 minutes.  Add 1/2 tablespoon of table salt to the boiling water and then add the pasta.  Allow potatoes and pasta to boil until almost ready, about 5 minutes.  Check the potatoes by piercing a fork through the potato (the fork should pierce easily).  Add the green beans and allow to boil another 3 minutes.  Once the pasta is al dente and potatoes are cooked through, reserve some pasta water, about 1/2 cup.  Drain the ingredients in a colander and then put everything back into the pot.  Mix in your pesto about 1/2 cup or to taste.  Since I froze my pesto in an ice cube tray, I used about 4 ice cube size pestos.  Add in a little pasta water and stir.

Garnish with parmesan cheese and pine nuts.

Pesto, Potatoes, Green Beans Pasta4

Pasta with Pesto, Potatoes and Green Beans:
Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: 25 minutes | Serves: 4

About 10 baby potatoes
1/2 tablespoon salt
8 ounces fusilli
4 ounces green beans or a handful, trimmed and halved
1/2 cup pesto
parmesan cheese (optional)
pine nuts (optional)

  1. Place potatoes in a large pot of water; bring to a boil.
  2. Add salt and pasta; return to a boil; cook until almost cooked through.  Potatoes can be pierced easily with a fork and the pasta is close to al dente.  About 5 minutes.
  3. Add green beans. Return to a boil; cook until pasta is al dente and potatoes are soft and cooked through, about 3 minutes.
  4. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water.  Drain remaining water; toss with pesto and add enough reserved pasta water until desired consistency for pasta sauce; Season with salt and pepper if needed.
  5. Garnish with pine nuts and grated parmesan cheese.

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