As I sit down to write this blog post I start to think about my beautiful children and how much I cherish
them and easy dinners. Because lets be real, life gets crazy with littles.
But through that crazy I start to miss when I first brought them home from the hospital.
One of the most cherished moments in time is the moment you hold your first born child. Your garment bag is sitting ready to go by the front door as you are eagerly awaiting to get to the hospital to welcome your baby into the world.
It’s all so clear like it just happened yesterday. The moment your child’s eyes first connect to your eyes, the soft smell of their sweet skin and the joy that encompasses your entire being is priceless and unforgettable!
You strive to document each smile, every laugh and the sudden moment they keep rolling over every time you happen to be looking away.
These are the moments that make me happy along with the continuing moments of watching my sweet children grow and nurture themselves with healthy food. And again easy dinners in less than 30 minutes.
Well I have to admit lately I have not been as blissfully happy as I was when I first brought home my newborn babies. I have been a bit of a sour pants and my husband asks, “What can I do to help?”
—The joke that I tell him is, “I need to eat a Troll to be happy today.”
If you have seen the children’s movie TROLLS then you know what I am talking about. And if you have not seen it yet- make it your next movie you watch! It is seriously the most adorable movie that puts you in a realistic happy mood!
—And you do not have to eat a Troll to be happy! Maybe just eat this one-pot basil pesto pasta instead:-)
When I am wearing my “sour pants” aka I am in a rotten mood I tend to gravitate towards eating comfort food. And what comes to mind is Sicilian pizza, Italian pasta, potatoes, breads and any and everything starchy! But guess what- this basil pesto pasta is totally guilt-free, gluten-free and packed with nutritional herbs, walnuts, tomatoes, olive oil, garlic and finished off with sauteed lemon slices. Hence the “lemony” title:-)
If you are eating dairy free or are on the Whole30 diet, skip the Parmesan cheese in the pesto sauce. The basil pesto pasta is still packed full of flavor!
Did you watch the video? Everything in the gluten free pasta dish is made in ONE-BOWL! I love it! Less dishes… am I right, or am I right?
You can make the basil pesto sauce while the noodles are cooking or make it ahead of time and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. I have to say, fresh is best though!
How To Make Pesto Sauce:
- Pesto sauce is so simple to make. Grab about 2-3 cups of fresh basil leaves and add them to a blender or food processor. Then add about 1/4 cup of walnuts or pine nuts, 1 cup of olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.
- You can add 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese too. I have made it with and without and both ways are quite tasty. If you want to make a creamy basil pesto sauce you can add one peeled avocado with the seed removed.
How To Make Pesto Pasta:
- Now that your delicious pesto is made, set it aside while the pasta cooks or make the pesto while the noodles cook.
- This dish is one pot so I like to cook the onions first. Sautee them in olive oil until they are fragrant and translucent then remove them from the pot and set aside. Now I do not have the lemons in the video because I made the lemon slices earlier. But grab a deliciously juicy lemon and cut it into slices. Add them to the pot and cook for about 1-2 minute each side to soften them then remove them from the pot and set aside as well.
- After the onions and lemons its is time to cook up some gluten free spaghetti pasta (I like this one)! You will want to reserve about 1/4 cup of the water to add to the sauce if it needs more liquid. Cook the pasta, drain then add it back into the pot with the onions and pesto sauce and mix well. Then add sliced grape tomatoes, walnuts and the lemon slices.
By using the same pot the seasoning enhances all the ingredients creating a fragrant perfectly balanced dish.
One pot to clean plus the blender and strainer. That’s not too much to handle, right? And now I will step back again and reminisce the first born moments before dinnertime got a little more chaotic.
- 1 box gluten-free spaghetti pasta noodles
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
- ½ white onion, diced
- 1 lemon, sliced
- ¼ cup walnut pieces
- PESTO SAUCE:
- 2-3 cups basil leaves
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ cup walnuts
- ½ cup olive oil
- ½ teaspoon pink salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Heat a large pot add 1 Tablespoon of olive oil and the diced onions. Heat the onions on medium heat until fragrant and translucent in color and once they are done remove them from the heat and set aside. In the same pot add the lemon slices and heat on medium heat for about 1-2 minutes then flip them and heat 1-2 minutes on the other side. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Cook the noodles in the same pot by adding water and cooking according to the package directions.
- While the spaghetti noodles are cooking make the pesto. In a blender add the basil leaves, garlic, walnuts, olive oil, salt and pepper. If you are using cheese in the recipe add the Parmesan cheese. Blend the pesto until smooth and set aside.
- The noodles should be done cooking and you will need to reserve ¼ - ½ cup of the water first. Then drain the noodles and put them back in the pot. Turn off the heat.
- Add the cooked onions and pesto to the noodles and mix until combined then add the tomato slices, walnuts and lemon slices. Add salt and pepper to taste and any reserve water if needed.
(slightly over 400 calories per serving)
|Amount Per Serving|
|% Daily Value *|
|Total Fat 30 g||47 %|
|Saturated Fat 6 g||30 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 16 g|
|Polyunsaturated Fat 6 g|
|Trans Fat 0 g|
|Cholesterol 12 mg||4 %|
|Sodium 488 mg||20 %|
|Potassium 168 mg||5 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 47 g||16 %|
|Dietary Fiber 3 g||12 %|
|Sugars 1 g|
|Protein 14 g||28 %|
|Vitamin A||20 %|
|Vitamin C||30 %|