Easy pasta with pesto spinach and pancetta

April 26, 2016

easy pasta pesto spinach recipe

At the moment I am so in to one pot meals especially during the week.  Because of other stuff happening in life, I have less time to cook.  But I still like a delicious family meal at the end of the day.  So one pot meals are the answer for me.  Pasta is one the best one pot meals because it lends itself to so many flavours and ingredients. This is one of my favourite easy, quick and yummy mid-week pasta dishes that my entire family enjoys (fussy kid included) and I don’t spend hours slaving or prepping over.

easy pasta with pesto recipe

Serves: 4

320 gms Farfalle pasta
180 gms green pesto (shop bought but the fresh version)
150 gms diced pancetta (leave out if you’re vegetarian)
1 tsp olive oil
2-3 large handfuls spinach
50 gms grated parmesan cheese
salt & pepper to taste

Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the packet.  While its cooking, wash and roughly chop up the spinach.  You can use the spinach without chopping but I’ve found that kids are less likely to pick it out if it’s in smaller pieces.  Fry the pancetta cubes (if using) in a teaspoon of olive oil until golden and crispy and drain on kitchen towel.

Once the pasta is cooked, keep aside a couple of tablespoons of the cooking liquid.  Take the pasta off the heat and throw in the spinach before draining the pasta.  Give it all a quick stir and then drain the pasta and spinach – the spinach cooks from the heat of the pasta especially if its chopped.  Add the cooking liquid and all the pesto to the pasta and spinach. Give it a really good mix and then add the parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste and mix again.  Finally sprinkle over the crispy pancetta cubes.  And that’s it!

pasta with pesto spinach and pancetta recipe

This easy pasta with pesto spinach and pancetta dish couldn’t be quicker to make.  The pancetta is entirely optional so if you are veggie or don’t eat pork, just leave it out.  And I always make extra as this pasta tastes so good cold too so I make enough for my lunch the next day and for Anya’s snack/lunch box for school.

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  • Honest Mum

    Aw what a delicious dish, ribbon pasta always takes me right back to my childhood, love this post x

    • ebabee likes

      Thanks lovely – funny you call it ribbon pasta as we call it bow pasta! Guess everyone has their own name for the different pastas xx

  • Alison @ Tickling the Wheat

    One pot dinners are the way to go!!! This looks so yummy and easy to make. I can’t wait to try it. (By the way, my son calls those noodles “sharp noodles” – they’re his favorite. It’s funny that we all have different names for them!)

    • ebabee likes

      That’s another name to add to the weird and wonderful names for this pasta! Do try it, so easy and yum too. Let me know what you think 🙂

  • Babes about Town

    This looks yummy and I love the addition of spinach too. The boys love eating spinach because of the ‘Popeye effect’ (hehe I tricked them early). What I highly recommend is making your own pesto – we make it by hand with pestle and mortar so it takes longer, but if you whizz it in a food processor it’s super quick and easy. I think I have a recipe on the blog somewhere and it’s truly delicious 🙂 But definitely we also turn to pre-made pesto for time saving, quick meal. Tasty! x

    • ebabee likes

      I know, would love to make my own pesto just short of time sometimes. But will def look up your recipe as I need a good one. Mine doesn’t fall for any ‘spinach’ tricks except if I chop it up and make it very, very painful to pick out 😉

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