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5-Ingredient Nut-Free Pesto Pasta

5 ingredient pesto pasta - FitLiving Eats by Carly Paige - featured

A simple and tasty weeknight meal, this nut-free pesto pasta requires only five ingredients and 15 minutes to make. The simplicity of this dish is no match for the insane flavor explosion every time you take a bite! Get the recipe for this perfectly balanced pasta recipe below.

5 ingredient pesto pasta - FitLiving Eats by Carly Paige - 1

Just when you think it can’t be done, it’s done. Who would have ever thought that a pesto with only five ingredients could deliver such robust flavor? Each bite of this nut-free pesto pasta is fresh, creamy and indulgent.

The simple pesto formula we are following in this recipe is: ½ cup seeds + ½ cup fresh basil leaves + 1 small garlic clove + juice of 1 lemon + ¼ cup olive oil. There’s always room for an optional add-in and you know I can’t live without my nutritional yeast!

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In this quick weeknight recipe, I used sunflower seeds for a nut-free version, but you can use any kind of nut or seed you like. Give yourself the freedom to experiment!

Not only is this nut-free pesto pasta like a flavor party in your mouth, it’s also perfectly balanced to satisfy hunger for the long haul.

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Following my tried-and-true perfect trifecta formula, you are getting protein and fiber from the lentil pasta, plus healthy fats from the olive oil and sunflower seeds. If you choose to use nutritional yeast, you’re also getting a hefty supply of B vitamins!

Can we just take a moment to talk about why lentil pasta is my favorite? It’s made from lentils which means it’s packed with protein and fiber. Lentil pasta is the perfect healthy swap for classic white pasta for a huge boost in nutrients. It’s so healthy that you no longer have to categorize pasta as “a splurge”!

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This five ingredient nut-free pesto pasta is delicious on its own and the perfect Meatless Monday meal. If you’ve got a meat lover on your hands, you could throw on some grilled chicken or a side of roasted salmon and it would be delicious! Instead of going the meat route, I tossed in a few veggies, including finely shredded kale and grape tomatoes.

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5 ingredient pesto pasta - FitLiving Eats by Carly Paige - featured

5-Ingredient Nut-Free Pesto Pasta

  • Author: FitLiving Eats by Carly Paige
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4
  • Category: Main
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Vegan


Try this 5-ingredient nut-free pesto pasta for your next meatless Monday. This simple recipe is delicious and healthy, and made in less than 30 minutes.


  • 1 box lentil pasta
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds
  • ½ cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Optional: 2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast


  1. Cook the pasta according to directions, making sure you boil in a pot of heavily salted water for added flavor.
  2. In a food processor, add the remaining ingredients and pulse until finely chopped, but still slightly chunky.
  3. Drain the pasta water and stir in the pesto. You can add veggies, such as chopped kale or grape tomatoes, or a side of additional protein if you like!

Keywords: nut free, nut free pesto, meatless monday pasta, vegan pasta, lentil pasta, protein meal, easy recipe, 15 minute meal, dinner, plant based dinner, 5 ingredient meal

Pasta la vista,

-Carly Paige

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Simply Swapped Everyday is your guide to elevating the everyday through mindful methods, ingredient swaps and over 75 plant-powered recipes. Cooking healthy foods at home has never been easier or more delicious!

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Hi! I’m Carly Paige, a culinary nutrition expert and chef who believes that healthy doesn’t have to be frustrating, boring or restrictive. I’m here to show you how through my Simply Swapped Method so that you can feel more energized and confident from within. You’ll find tips for focusing on nutrition in the kitchen, along with plant-powered, gluten-free recipes that proves healthy can be delicious.

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