Pea-Mint Pesto Fusilli

There's always room for a fresh take on pesto pasta.

Fusilli with Minty Pea Pesto
Photo: Jennifer Causey
Hands On Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
30 mins

A good pesto sauce does a few things well. First, it packs in a generous amount of herbs (here, mint and parsley offer a novel twist on the classic basil). Next, the herbs are matched by salty cheese, in this case, nutty pecorino Romano, which is similar to Parmesan but saltier and slightly sharper. Finally, there should be something nutty—pine nuts are standard—and enough garlic to bring welcome punch. But this recipe offers a totally new twist: slightly sweet peas that transform the sauce into a silky, balanced revelation. You'll stir it together with fusilli, whose corkscrew curls snag ample sauce, to make a delightful, crowd-pleasing dish.


  • 12 ounces fusilli or other short pasta

  • ½ cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

  • ¼ cup packed fresh mint leaves

  • 2 ounces pecorino Romano cheese, shredded (about 1/2 cup), plus more for serving

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 2 cups frozen peas (from a 10-oz. pkg.), thawed, divided

  • ½ cup toasted pine nuts, divided

  • ¼ cup olive oil

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for water

  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  1. Cook pasta in a large pot of generously salted water according to package directions for al dente. Reserve 1 cup cooking water. Drain pasta; return it to pot.

  2. Meanwhile, place parsley, mint, cheese, garlic, 1½ cups peas, and ¼ cup pine nuts in a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. With processor running, drizzle in oil; process until pesto is smooth, about 1 minute.

  3. Add pesto, salt, pepper, ½ cup reserved cooking water, and remaining ½ cup peas to pasta in pot. Cook over medium, stirring constantly, until pasta is fully coated and warmed through, about 2 minutes. Add more reserved cooking water, 1 tablespoon at a time, to loosen sauce to desired consistency. Serve topped with remaining ¼ cup pine nuts and cheese.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

649 Calories
31g Fat
76g Carbs
21g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 649
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 31g 40%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 15mg 5%
Sodium 600mg 26%
Total Carbohydrate 76g 28%
Dietary Fiber 7g 25%
Total Sugars 8g
Protein 21g

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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