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Plant Based Meals

Zucchini Pesto Pasta Salad

This salad is delicious warm or cool!  You can change out the ingredients to whatever is in season.


  • 4 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and then cut crosswise in 1/2 inch moons.

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 250 g penne pasta

  • 425 g can cannellini (drained and rinsed)


I added :-


  • 1/4 cup edamame beans (thawed)  *optional

  • 2 cups baby spinach, mixed through the warm pasta 

  • parmesan to serve (if eating 100% plant based, omit the parmesan)




250 g of store bought pesto (read the ingredients and look for olive oil as opposed to canola of sunflower oil)

OR you can make your own :-


  • 2 1/2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves

  • 1 clove garlic, chopped

  • 1/4 cup walnuts

  • 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice 

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper


To make the salad, preheat oven to 200C and line a baking tray with baking paper.

Toss the zucchini with the oil, salt and pepper until coated and spread evenly on the tray.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until tender and lightly browned.


Meanwhile bring a large post of salted water to boil.  Stir in the pasta. then adjust the heat to maintain a low boil.  Cook (approx 10-12minutes), stirring occasionally, until the pasta is tender but still firm.  Drain well.


Put the pasta, zucchini, and beans in a large bowl, stir gently to combine.


Add the spinach and edamame beans, stir to combine.


To make the pesto combine all the ingredients in a food processor, or nutri bullet for 1 minute, or longer until the pesto has a smooth even consistency.


Add the pesto to the pasta mixture and stir gently to combine.


Serve warm, cool or at room temperature.  Top with vegan parmesan if you are eating a Whole Food Plant Based Diet.  

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