Avocado Pesto Pasta Salad

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Fork in a bowl of avocado pesto pasta topped with vegan parmesan and sun-dried tomatoes

If you love pasta but are craving something lighter for spring and summer, this is the pasta for you! Avocado lovers unite! The key to this 10-ingredient, 30-minute dish is the avocado pesto sauce, which was inspired by the flavors and vibrant color of our Green Goddess Dressing!

It’s lemony, garlicky, herby, and incredibly creamy thanks to buttery avocado. Simply toss the pasta of your choice in this delicious sauce and add any seasonal veggies you have on hand and call it a meal or picnic-friendly side. Let us show you how it’s done!

Fresh herbs, garlic, lemon, pasta, sun-dried tomatoes, vegan parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, coconut aminos, and olive oil

How to Make Avocado Pasta Sauce

The star of this pasta salad is the sauce. It’s made with a creamy avocado base, brightened up with fresh herbs and lemon, and packs a punch from garlic, coconut aminos, salt, and pepper. Olive oil is an optional addition for a richer sauce and more earthy/floral notes.

Blender with fresh parsley, basil, black pepper, chives, garlic, and avocado

All the ingredients get blended up in a small blender or food processor with a little water to encourage blending. The result is a thick and creamy avocado pasta sauce in a matter of minutes!

Blender of herby avocado pesto

After preparing the sauce, all that’s left to do is cook the pasta and coat it in sauce. If you have any fresh seasonal veggies lying around, this would be a good time to add them in. We think roasted broccoli, fresh arugula or peas, or slow roasted tomatoes would all pair nicely.

Using a vintage spoon to stir avocado herb pesto on gluten-free noodles

Step it up to the next level by garnishing with sun-dried tomatoes for bites of sweetness and vegan parmesan cheese for a salty, cheesy element. Swoon!

Large serving bowl of avocado pesto on gluten-free noodles

We hope you LOVE this avocado pasta salad! It’s:

Herby
Zesty
Creamy
Lemony
Fresh
& SO delicious!

It’s the perfect side or entrée for spring and beyond! Enjoy it on its on or paired with roasted vegetables or a salad. It would be especially delicious with our Grilled Romaine Caesar Salad with Herbed White Beans (30 Minutes!), Super Cleansing Slaw with Rosemary Dressing, Grain-Free Tabbouleh Salad (6 Ingredients!), or 5-Minute Green Salad with No-Mix Tahini Dressing.

More Pasta Salad Recipes

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Large platter of avocado pesto pasta with fresh basil, sun-dried tomatoes, and vegan parmesan cheese

Avocado Pesto Pasta Salad

A quick, light, and flavorful pasta made with an herby avocado pesto! Just 10 simple ingredients required and seasonally adaptable!
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Vintage fork in a bowl of our avocado pesto pasta salad recipe
5 from 9 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 (Servings)
Course Entrée or Side
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 2 Days

Ingredients

PASTA

  • Water for boiling
  • 1 Tbsp salt (for seasoning the water)
  • 12 oz. dry gluten-free pasta (we like Trader Joe’s Brown Rice & Quinoa Fusilli)

SAUCE

  • 1/4 cup tightly packed fresh parsley (loosely chopped before measuring)
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves (loosely chopped before measuring)
  • 3 Tbsp loosely packed fresh chives (loosely chopped before measuring // if you don’t have chives, sub more of the other herbs)
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup ripe mashed avocado
  • 1/3 cup water (plus more as needed)
  • 3 large cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp coconut aminos (for depth of flavor // or sub half the amount of tamari)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil (optional // for more earthy, floral flavor)

FOR SERVING optional

Instructions

  • In a large pot, bring 2 quarts (~1.9 liters) of water to a boil, and add 1 Tbsp salt to season pasta water (amounts written as original recipe // adjust as needed if adjusting serving size).
  • While water is coming to a boil, make the sauce. To a small blender or food processor, add parsley, basil, chives, lemon juice, avocado, water, garlic, coconut aminos, salt, pepper, and olive oil (optional). Blend until smooth, scraping down sides as needed. Sauce may seem a little thick but will loosen when it’s added to the pasta.
  • Once water is boiling, cook gluten-free pasta according to package directions. Then drain pasta and immediately transfer to a medium serving bowl. Pour sauce over pasta and mix thoroughly. Taste and adjust, adding more salt if needed, lemon for more zing, or chopped basil for more herbiness.
  • Serve immediately. Option to garnish with veggies of choice (such as chopped sun-dried tomatoes — rehydrated if fully dry), vegan parmesan cheese, and fresh lemon juice. Best served fresh at room temperature. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Not freezer friendly.

Video

Notes

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with 1/4 tsp of the salt in the pasta water (since the full tablespoon isn’t absorbed into the pasta) and without optional ingredients.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 362 Carbohydrates: 70 g Protein: 8.6 g Fat: 6.8 g Saturated Fat: 0.6 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.6 g Monounsaturated Fat: 2.8 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 466 mg Potassium: 206 mg Fiber: 5.3 g Sugar: 0.7 g Vitamin A: 597 IU Vitamin C: 14.5 mg Calcium: 21.5 mg Iron: 1.7 mg

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Reader Interactions

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  1. Ana says

    Thank you for this fresh and delicious recipe. The whole family loved it. I didn’t have sundried tomatoes, so I added roasted broccoli (idea from another recipe of yours) and cherry tomatoes instead. I’m so glad we have leftovers!

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad to hear everyone enjoyed it, Ana! Thank you for the lovely review! xo

  2. Kelly says

    I accidentally did 1/2 cup packed parsley, and used a whole lemon’s juice, didn’t measure. Topped it with cashew parm and Italian-seasoned grilled tempeh. So delicious!!! Will make this recipe again and again.

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yumm – maybe we should measure less often! Thanks for the lovely review, Kelly. xo

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Marie. We are so glad you and your family enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  3. Cathy Beedle says

    I enjoyed this pasta so much I’m making it again for the second night in a row! The lemon was a tiny bit too much so I’ll be sure to adjust tonight. We added walnuts for a bit of texture, seitan would be good also.

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! Thanks for the lovely review, Cathy! Happy to hear it’s making a repeat appearance! xo

  4. Eva says

    Can only the pesto sauce be made ahead, and then warmed up the next day with freshly boiled pasta? Thanks in advance!

      • Eva says

        I did this for a weekend trip- made the sauce on Thursday, stuck it in the fridge for 24 hrs, travelled with it in a cooler for 4 hours, then mixed it with sundried tomatoes and freshly boiled hot pasta on Friday. Everyone raved! Next time I might add some kalamata olives… such an easy way to use up any herbs :) Thank you!

  5. shelley mcnaughton says

    I am diabetic type 1. What is the nutritional value for only the pesto sauce itself without the parmesan cheese.

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Shelley, we haven’t calculated the sauce on its own. We’d suggest using a tool such as cronometer.

  6. Molly says

    This was a fabulously customizable recipe! I didn’t have any parsley or basil on hand but so I used fresh dill, which transformed the recipe in a fresh, fun way. Using this recipe as a base, I added snap peas, cherry tomatoes, peppers, and spinach, making this a full meal. I used chickpea pasta to give that extra pop of protein. The whole family loved and I’ll make it again (and perhaps try the original herbs this time!)

    PS – a generous heaping of nutritional yeast is a great sub for parm in a pinch!

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! We’re so glad you and your family enjoyed it, Molly. Love all your creative modifications/additions too. Thanks so much for sharing! xo

  7. Donna says

    We just made this with spaghetti and asparagus! It was so fresh and bright! Delicious! Perfect to celebrate spring.

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the lovely review, Donna. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  8. Sienna says

    This was amazing!!!!! (I’m not vegan) so I added some chicken and zucchini with a little bit of Parmesan on top and OH. MY. GOD. This recipe was definitely a keeper and making another bath for my aunt tomorrow!

  9. Michelle says

    this was delicious and didn’t take that long to make. added some roasted asparagus and we did use the sundried tomatoes. Wonderful!

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! We’re so glad you enjoyed it, Michelle. Thanks so much for the lovely review! xo

  10. Sara says

    We were looking for something quick (and vegan) for supper, and this popped up in my inbox. It was quick, easy, and delicious! (I used two garlic cloves, and found that to be enough for my taste.)

    I’m a huge fan of your recipes (they’re simple and almost always turn out great) and find myself coming back to your website more than others.

    Thank you so much!!

  11. Jennifer Hopkins says

    Any idea how long this will last in the fridge? I’m wondering if it will get brown with the avocado in it?