Fridge-raid one-pan pesto pasta

Use up odds and ends hanging around in the fridge to make this pasta. Try courgettes instead of peppers, or other leafy greens in place of the spinach

  • Prep:15 mins
    Cook:20 mins
  • Serves 6
  • Easy

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 366
  • fat 10g
  • saturates 3g
  • carbs 52g
  • sugars 0g
  • fibre 5g
  • protein 14g
  • salt 1g


  • 2 tbsp olive, sunflower or vegetable oil
  • 1 onion (white or red) or 1⁄2 bunch of spring onions, finely sliced
  • 1 pepper , chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves , crushed or finely grated
  • 2-4 tbsp pesto (depending on what you have left in the jar), check it’s vegetarian if needed
  • 900ml stock (vegetable or chicken stock works well)
  • 2 rosemary or thyme sprigs
  • 400g pasta (we used penne)
  • 200g spinach or frozen peas
  • 2-3 tbsp mascarpone , crème fraiche or soured cream
  • ½ lemon (optional)
  • grated Italian-style hard cheese or vegetarian alternative, to serve (optional)


  1. Heat the oil in a large lidded pan over a medium-low heat and fry the onions with a pinch of salt for 8-10 mins until beginning to soften, then stir in the peppers and cook for 5 mins more. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 min before adding the pesto. Mix everything together and cook for a couple of minutes.

  2. Pour in the stock, then add the rosemary or thyme, followed by the pasta. Stir everything together, bring to a simmer, put the lid on and cook for 12-14 mins until the pasta is almost cooked. Add a splash more water if necessary.

  3. Stir in the spinach or frozen peas and cook for 2 mins, or until the spinach is wilted. Spoon in the mascarpone, crème fraiche or soured cream, then mix it in. Squeeze over the lemon, if using, then serve with grated Italian hard cheese scattered over, if you like.

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