This Red Pesto Pasta recipe is packed with roasted tomatoes, fresh basil, and mozzarella for a healthy summer side. Pair with a light salad or soup to make it a meal!
With summer around the corner, I am so pumped for all the fresh produce at farmer’s markets and from the backyard. This Tomato Pesto Pasta recipe is packed with fresh basil, roasted tomatoes and mozzarella cheese.
This healthy pasta has been a longtime favorite and was a go-to during my family’s time in Japan. I love serving this pasta as a side, but can be turned into a main course with a side of garlic bread or a side salad. I hope you enjoy this delicious pasta recipe.
This quick and easy pasta is perfect for summer and packed with roasted tomatoes.
- A Large Pot
- A Strainer
- A Baking Sheet
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
- A Sharp Knife and Cutting Board
- A Few Prep Bowls
- Dried Pasta Noodles: My favorite noodle to use is Angel Hair Pasta, but you can use regular spaghetti noodles or any other variety you prefer.
- Red Pesto: I use store bought tomato pesto the vast majority of the time for this pasta. It saves long in the pantry and makes this recipe super easy and quick to throw together. You can of course make your own homemade pesto if you wish. If you want to try a different sauce for this pesto pasta recipe you can use my homemade basil pesto sauce.
- Fresh Mozzarella: I buy a ball of it and just tear some off. You can slice it, use shredded mozzarella, or buy the small pearls.
- Dried Spices
- Olive Oil
- Fresh Basil: This is optional for topping. You can leave the leaves whole as shown, or slice them into ribbons or strips.
- Tomatoes: I love using a medoly of tomatoes for this red pesto pasta recipe, but cherry or grape tomatoes can be used as well. I do not recommend using canned tomatoes for this quick and easy recipe.
How to Make Red Pesto Pasta
- Cooking the Pasta
Place a large pot of salted water on the stove and bring to a boil. Cook pasta according to package instructions.
- Roasting the Tomatoes
While the pasta is boiling, add the tomatoes to a prep bowl and toss in olive oil and dried spices. Add to a small baking sheet either sprayed with cooking oil or lined with foil. Bake in the oven at 375 degrees F for 20-25 minutes until soft and blistered.
- Combing the Pasta
Once the pasta is al dante, strain it then toss in the red pesto sauce. Next, once the tomatoes are finished roasting, toss them in with the pasta, add in some fresh mozzarella and garnish with fresh basil. Enjoy!
Check out these Other Great Side Dishes
Prep Ahead of Time: I love making the tomatoes and pasta ahead of time and keeping them in the fridge overnight. This makes it simple to toss everything together the next day for a fast and simple side for dinner.
Make it a Main: I enjoy serving this sun dried tomato pesto pasta as a side, but this recipe can be turned into the star of the show by pairing with a side salad, or garlic bread. Alternatively, you could add in some grilled or baked chicken.
Red pesto sauce is made of a blend of fresh basil leaves, parmesan cheese, tomatoes, lemon juice, pine nuts, and garlic. You combine everything in a food processor and pulse until a paste forms. You can easily make your own homemade sauce or use a basil store bought one.
I find red pesto sauce near the pasta sauces, usually on the top shelf. Also, another place to look in your local supermarket is in the Italian food section.
Store leftover red pesto pasta in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Rewarm the pasta in the microwave for 30-60 seconds until warm when ready to eat.
This easy pesto pasta recipe is always a hit and a longtime favorite of mine. This recipe is inspired by my favorite restaurant I loved going to when we lived in Japan. I hope you and your family enjoy, and if you have any questions leave them below.
Red Pesto Pasta Recipe with Roasted Tomatoes
- Cook dried pasta on the stove top in a large pot of salted boiling water according to package instructions. While the water is boiling preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Toss the cherry tomatoes in a large bowl with 1 tbsp of oilve oil, pepper, salt, Italian seasoning, and minced garlic. Pour the tomatoes on a small foil lined baking sheet and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until soft and blistering.
- When the pasta is finished cooking, drain the water and toss with red pesto sauce and oilve oil until well combined.
- When the tomatoes are finished roasting add to the top of the pasta along with torn pieces of fresh mozzarella, and fresh basil leaves. Enjoy warm!