Spinach-Pesto Pasta with Roasted Red Peppers and Ricotta
Spinach-Pesto Pasta with Roasted Red Peppers and Ricotta

As M and I continue our whirlwind holiday tour, I thought I’d pop in and share this simple pasta dish. As of a couple weeks ago, I killed my basil plant. Sacramento received a few nights of frost and I forgot to bring the plant inside. So instead of a pesto heavy on the basil, I’m supplementing with spinach (which is still growing strong.) I also highly recommend looking for freshly made ricotta or even trying your hand at making your own.

In the coming week, I’ll be sharing a few compilation recipe post to inspire you for the new year. If there is something you would like to see- let me know!


Spinach-Pesto Pasta with Roasted Red Peppers and Ricotta

  • Author: Erin Alderson
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 20 mins
  • Yield: 2 large, 4 small portions


  • Pesto:
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 1 cup fresh packed baby spinach
  • 2 tablespoons hazelnuts
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese*
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • Pasta
  • 8 ounces whole wheat pasta
  • 1 roasted red pepper,diced
  • 1/3 cup fresh ricotta cheese


  1. To make pesto, pulse garlic in a blender or food processor to mince. Add the remaining ingredients for the pesto and pulse until well combined. Taste and adjust flavors with olive oil, lemon juice, or sea salt if needed. If pesto needs to be thinned down slightly, add 1-2 tablespoons of extra olive oil or water.
  2. Bring a pot of water to a boil with a pinch of salt. Add pasta, turn heat down, and cook until pasta is tender, 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat, drain, and place in a bowl. While pasta is still hot, add pesto and roasted red peppers. Sprinkle ricotta on top and fold into the pasta dish. Serve pasta while still warm.

(Recipe first appeared for a monthly column I write for the Bay Area News Group.)