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Photograph of Semi-dried Tomato Pesto Pasta

Semi-dried Tomato Pesto Pasta

An easy, simple and classic combination, this Semi-dried Tomato Pesto Pasta is a winner on taste, texture, ease and speed of cooking. Simply cook the pasta and stir in the pesto, with some pasta water, to make a delicious sauce.

Course Any
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Pasta, pesto, semi-dried tomatoes
Servings 1
Author Susan


Basic ingredients -

  • 100g pasta of your choice. I like fusilli as the sauce really sticks to all those twirls!
  • salted water
  • 4 tablespoons pesto, or as much as desired
  • 4 tablespoons pasta cooking water, or as necessary

Optional extras to garnish -

  • shredded basil or fresh herbs of choice
  • grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano

Ideas of other ingredients you could add -

  • chopped fresh tomatoes
  • fried or roasted vegetables such as courgette/zucchini, aubergine, mushrooms, peppers, sweetcorn, onion
  • crispy bacon
  • slices of cooked sausage
  • smoked salmon or flaked cooked salmon


  1. Collect together your equipment (see Recipe Notes below) and ingredients.

  2. Cook your pasta of choice in boiling salted water until al dente, according to packet instructions.

  3. Reserve ½ cup of pasta water, drain the pasta and then put it back into the saucepan.

  4. Add the pesto and slowly add the pasta water and put the saucepan back on a medium heat. Cook for 1 - 2 minutes, until everything is piping hot and the pesto is adhering to all the pasta.

  5. Serve as is or with some garnishes. A salad and garlic bread on the side make perfect accompaniments.

Recipe Notes


  • kitchen scales and measuring spoons
  • saucepan
  • warmed serving dishes

How many does this recipe serve?

The quantities given are just for one person. However it is so easy to scale up.

Can I use different pestos in this recipe?

You can use any pesto in this recipe, with or without dairy, shop bought or homemade. Pestos vary quite a bit so add the pesto and pasta water to taste How much you need will depend on the consistency you are looking for.

Why not try this recipe, with these pestos:

What is the best way to store this pasta?

Store, covered, in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Can you freeze this pasta?

To be honest I have never frozen it. It is so quick to make that I make it fresh. however, pesto freezes really well, as does pasta, so it should freeze well in a covered container for up to 3 months. If you freeze yours, do let me know how you get on.