This coriander pesto pasta (or cilantro pesto pasta if you are in the US!) is a flavourful twist on regular pasta, and perfect for an easy weeknight dinner. A simple recipe that comes together in less than half an hour, it is a vegan and low histamine recipe.
Pesto is always a tasty and healthy way to perk up meals, and you may like to see my pesto chicken skewers and pumpkin pesto soup for flavourful dishes.
This easy pasta is just the thing for a busy weeknight dinner! Fresh herbs give so much flavour, yet we have all the comfort food vibes from the pasta. I think you will add this coriander pesto pasta to your weekly menu!
This post was updated with new information, tips and photos on 8 January 2022.
⭐ Why you'll love this recipe
- Comfort food - this pesto pasta recipe is perfect for cosying up on the couch with!
- New flavours - using coriander (cilantro) makes a nice change from basil and has so much flavour.
- Weeknight dinner - a very simple and quick recipe to make.
Just seven ingredients, and mostly pantry staples are needed for this recipe:
- Pasta - choose the type you prefer, and a gluten free option if required.
- Coriander / cilantro - you want fresh coriander leaves without wilting or brown patches.
- Pumpkin seeds / pepitas - these are used in place of pine nuts, and make it a nut free pesto recipe.
- Garlic - add as many cloves as you like!
- Extra virgin olive oil - the base of the pesto, and full of goodness as well.
- Apple cider vinegar - for a little tang.
- Salt - to season.
- Pepper - optional, to season.
📖 Variations to the recipe
If you wish to combine herbs for the pesto, you may like to add a little parsley or basil.
My low histamine readers may wish to leave out the apple cider vinegar, or use white distilled vinegar instead.
🔪 Step by step instructions
Just a few very easy steps to make this coriander pesto pasta:
Dry toast the pumpkin seeds in a pan until they begin to slightly brown and pop. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
Cook the pasta according to packet instructions.
Combine all the ingredients for the pesto in a food processor (or I use a Nutri-Bullet) and blend to a thick pesto. You may need to scrape the sides of the blender down a few times.
💭 Recipe tips and notes
- Use fresh coriander / cilantro leaves for the best flavour.
- Using extra virgin olive oil will have a better taste than regular olive oil, and has increased health benefits also (Healthline).
- If the pesto feels too dry, add a little extra olive oil or pasta water. If lemon juice works for you, then a small squeeze would work also.
- You will likely need to scrape the sides of the blender down a few times as this is a thicker pesto sauce.
📋 Frequently asked questions
Yes! It's called coriander in the UK and cilantro in the US.
Most forms of pasta work well, including penne, fusilli and other small pasta shapes. Maybe even spaghetti if you fancy it!
Yes, if they work for you then pine nuts will make a lovely creamy pesto too!
🍽 More tasty pesto recipes
I’m always in the kitchen, so come join me on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest to be the first to hear of new recipes. And please do leave a star rating if you tried the recipe!
Coriander Pesto Pasta
- 4 oz pasta of your choice
For the pesto
- ½ cup coriander (fresh) tightly packed
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- ¼ cup olive oil extra virgin
- 1-2 cloves garlic to preference
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar optional
- pink himalayan salt to taste
- Lightly toast the pumpkin seeds for 3-4 minutes on a low heat in a pan (without oil) until they start to brown and pop. Once toasted, set aside on some kitchen towel.
- Once the pumpkin seeds have cooled, add all the ingredients for the pesto to a food processor and blend until you have a thick pesto. Add a dash of the pasta water and/or olive oil if it seems too dry.
- Cook the pasta in a saucepan according to the packet instructions.
- Combine the cooked pasta with the pesto in the saucepan and serve immediately as it is, or with a side salad or other side-dishes.
- If the pesto seems to thick or dry, then add either pasta water or more olive oil.
- You will likely need to scrape the sides of the food processor down a few times.
- This makes a fair amount of pesto, so you may have some left for another meal.
- Please note that nutritional information is offered as a courtesy. It is auto-generated and should be understood to be an estimate.
- apple cider vinegar which rates '1',
- garlic, which rates as '1'.
- coriander, which rates as '0' is stated to be well tolerated in small amounts.
- Wheat, which would be the main ingredient of traditional pasta, scores a '1' on the SIGHI scale.
Katie Clark says
Yay! Pesto without dairy! All store types (and restaurants) have dairy in it. Love this one!