Toasted Walnut and Pesto Pasta

Southern Living Cooking School
Toasted Walnut and Pesto PastaRecipe
Prep: 20 min., Cook: 23 min., Cool: 5 min.
Makes 4 servings


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2 tablespoons chopped walnuts
1/2 (16-oz.) package whole wheat penne pasta
1 garlic clove
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup loosely packed fresh parsley leaves
3 tablespoons PROMISE Buttery Spread, divided
1/2 pound skinned and boned chicken breasts, thinly sliced
1 cup diced zucchini
1 small red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
Garnish: fresh parsley sprig


1. Heat nuts in a 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium-low heat, stirring often, 3 minutes or until toasted and fragrant. Remove from heat, and let cool 5 minutes.

2. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain, reserving 1/4 cup pasta water.

3. Meanwhile, process walnuts and garlic in a blender or food processor 10 seconds or until finely chopped. Add basil, parsley, and 2 tablespoons buttery spread; process 30 seconds or until blended.

4. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon buttery spread in skillet over medium heat; add chicken, and cook, stirring occasionally, 6 to 7 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove chicken from skillet.

5. Add zucchini and bell pepper to skillet, and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 4 minutes or until tender. Return chicken and any accumulated juices to skillet, and cook 1 minute or until chicken is done. Toss hot penne with chicken mixture, pesto, and reserved pasta water. Garnish, if desired.

Created date

May 2008