A plate of Avocado Pesto Cavatelli Pasta.
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Avocado Pesto Recipe with Cavatelli

This Avocado Pesto recipe is made with avocado, spinach, basil, walnuts and cheese. The perfect creamy sauce to have with cavatelli pasta for a meatless dinner. 
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Canadian Italian
Keyword avocado pasta sauce, avocado pesto
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 625kcal
Author Maria Vannelli RD

Ingredients

  • 1 pound cavatelli pasta I use half of my homemade cavatelli recipe
  • 1 cup reserved pasta water or to desired consistency

Avocado Pesto Sauce:

  • 1 avocado
  • 1 cup spinach leaves fresh
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 1 bunch basil fresh, about ¼ cup
  • ½ cup walnuts lightly toasted
  • ¼ cup Pecorino Romano grated
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • salt and pepper to taste

Toppings:

  • Extra virgin olive oil to drizzle
  • Pecorino Romano cheese to taste
  • garnish with fresh basil leaves optional

Instructions

  • Over high heat, bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. 
  • While waiting for the water to boil, make the avocado pesto sauce by adding all the ingredients in a food processor and pulsing until the mixture is smooth.
  • Taste and adjust for salt and pepper.
  • Transfer to a large skillet set over low heat.
  • Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until al dente or to desired consistency. 
  • Add pasta water to the avocado pesto sauce to obtain desired consistency.
  • Once the pasta is cooked, remove with a spider or strainer and add it directly to the pan.
  • Toss to coat. Taste and adjust seasonings. 
  • Top with extra cheese and a drizzle of olive oil, if using.
  • Serve immediately.

Notes

  • Use any pasta with this sauce. 
  • This sauce is at its best the day it is made as it quickly turns brown because of the avocado.
  • 1 serving = 1½ cups
Can I use other nuts? Absolutely! Pecans, almonds, pistachios, or even pine nuts can be used. 
Can I make this nut-free? Yes, replace the nuts with roasted pumpkin or sunflower seeds. 
Can I make this vegan? Yes, simply replace the cheese with nutritional yeast.  
How do I store leftovers? Place in an airtight container and refrigerate. Best used within 1 day. 
Please keep in mind that the nutritional information provided below is just a rough estimate and variations can occur depending on the specific ingredients used. 
*adapted from Eating Well

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 625kcal | Carbohydrates: 92g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 92mg | Potassium: 603mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 908IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 122mg | Iron: 2mg