Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta (Vegan + GF)

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Plate of Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta for a simple gluten-free vegan meal

It’s getting to be that time of year when dinners are meant to be eaten on patios and lunches should be consumed in parks and on beaches. For such weather, I have just the thing:

Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta! Hello, spring.

Wood platter with sun-dried tomatoes, olive oil, gluten-free fusili, garlic, basil, and nutritional yeast

Origins of Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Sun-dried tomatoes are a common ingredient in Italian cuisine. Italians originally dried tomatoes on their ceramic rooftops. And it’s thought that the technique may even date as far back 700 AD when Aztecs would salt and dry tomatoes in the sun to preserve their freshness (source). Whoever came up with the brilliant idea, we’re grateful!

Blender with ingredients for making Vegan Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

How to Make Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta

If you’re a lover of simple pasta, you’re going to love this recipe.

It’s big on flavor and short on time and both vegan and gluten free! Plus, from start to finish it requires about 20 minutes and just 6 ingredients! In my world, it doesn’t get much better than that.

While your (gluten-free) pasta is boiling just blitz your sun-dried tomatoes with olive oil, garlic, vegan parmesan, fresh basil, and salt + pepper.

Small bowl filled with our simple Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

In a matter of minutes you have a dairy-free pesto that’s ideal for pastas, bread dipping, sandwich spreading, and even salad topping. You’ve gotta love a sauce that can multitask. 

I think you guys are going to LOVE this pasta! It’s:

Super flavorful
Savory
Fresh
Simple
Satisfying
& perfect for warmer weather

Why warmer weather you ask? Eat it hot, eat it cold, eat it lukewarm – it’s still delicious. This makes it perfect for picnics, road trips, and beach days.

Mixing gluten-free noodles and vegan Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto in a mixing bowl

If you try this recipe, let us know what you think! Leave a comment and rate it! And don’t forget to take a picture and tag it #minimalistbaker on Instagram so we can be pasta pals. Cheers!

Dinner plate filled with our delicious and simple Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta
Simple gluten-free vegan dinner of our Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta recipe

Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta (V + GF)

Simple, 6-ingredient Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta that comes together in 20 minutes! An easy, healthy vegan, gluten-free lunch or dinner.
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Big plate of Gluten-Free Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta topped with fresh basil
4.87 from 43 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 3
Course Entree
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Italian-Inspired, Latin-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 3-4 Days

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces gluten-free pasta (such as fusilli // or sub whole wheat)*
  • 3 ounces sun-dried tomatoes (1 cup yield ~3 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil*
  • 1 cup fresh basil (plus more for serving)
  • 2-4 cloves garlic
  • 2 Tbsp Vegan Parmesan Cheese (plus more for serving)

Instructions

  • Boil water, add salt, and then add pasta. Cook according to package instructions. Pasta with grooves is best.
  • Add sun-dried tomatoes, olive oil, basil, garlic (starting with lesser amount), and vegan parmesan cheese to a food processor or high-speed blender and puree into a pesto-like consistency.
  • If it has trouble mixing, add a bit of hot pasta water (2-3 Tbsp // amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) to help encourage it along. It doesn’t need to be finely pureed, just well mixed. I think a bit of texture is a good thing in this dish. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more garlic for zing, basil for herbiness, or vegan parmesan cheese for cheesiness.
  • Add drained pasta back to the pot you cooked it in and add pesto. Toss to coat and season with a bit more olive oil and vegan parmesan.
  • Serve warm with additional fresh basil and vegan parmesan cheese. Store covered in the fridge for up to a few days, though best when fresh.
  • This can be enjoyed hot, slightly chilled or at room temperature, making it ideal for picnics and take-along lunches!

Notes

*For my pasta, I used the gluten-free quinoa brown rice pasta from Trader Joe’s and it’s seriously delicious and undetectably gluten-free!
*If your sun-dried tomatoes are in oil, omit the extra olive oil.
*Loosely adapted from Giada de Laurentis.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate.

Nutrition (1 of 3 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 594 Carbohydrates: 78 g Protein: 14.5 g Fat: 25 g Saturated Fat: 4.2 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 271 mg Fiber: 10.4 g Sugar: 2 g

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  1. Kelly says

    This recipe was fantastic! I used regular pasta and non-vegan grated parmesan cheese. I used sun dried tomatoes in oil, so cut the olive oil way back as the recipe notes, but added some at the end when I mixed the pasta with the pesto. I served it with Italian sausage (vegetarian for me, meat for my husband) and some roasted cauliflower. Such an easy, delicious meal. This would also work perfect cold as a lovely pasta salad. Can’t wait for leftovers!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoyed it, Kelly! And love the modifications! Thanks so much for sharing!

  2. Megan Kim says

    Do you think it’s okay if I prep the pesto sauce a day before and store it in the fridge? And then the next day I’m planning to just make the pasta and add the pesto I’ve already made. Thanks!

  3. Chupacabro says

    Wasn’t sure how this recipe would go but it came out great!

    No problems with the amount of garlic here, in fact I upped it a bit (I always wonder if there is confusion between garlic “cloves” with “heads” when people read recipes).

    I substituted non-vegan parmesan, added a little basil pesto I had around, and then mixed in some chopped artichokes afterward, and it was so flavorful!

  4. Mary says

    Great dish, but WHOA hello garlic!! I questioned the 4 cloves of garlic as I was adding but still moved ahead. We will be smelling like garlic for days. I’d recommend updating the recipe to specify 4 SMALL cloves of garlic, or 2 bigger ones?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Ah! Thanks for your feedback! We’ll revisit it and add a range for more tame garlic enthusiasts.

  5. Julie Ann Gardner says

    This is so so easy to make and with minimal ingredients. I only used the tomatoes, oil, basil, garlic and added a pinch of chilli flakes to give it a little kick. Served with a green salad and chickpea fusilli (protein). The pasta does need ridges or indentations for the sauce to “cling” to. If you like strong, bold and intense food, then this sauce is for you.

  6. Donovan J says

    Just made this and it was absolutely delicious. Adding it to my personal recipes for guests. I didn’t have parmesan so I used nutritional yeast, do you think there would be a noticeable taste difference? Thank you :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Donovan, we’re so glad you enjoyed it! The vegan parmesan would give it a bit of a richer flavor.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Anna, we haven’t tried those ones! We like Trader Joe’s Quinoa & Brown Rice Fusili.

  7. Mary says

    So delicious! It has quickly become a weekly staple for me. I didn’t have any parmesan so I left that out, and it’s extremely tasty even just with the basil, olive oil, sun dried tomatoes, and garlic. Quick & easy to make as well. Highly recommend!

  8. Jessica Kachniarz says

    I made this delicious dish for a party and added roasted shrimp. It was such a hit! I nearly tripled the sun-dried tomato pesto amount because I love my pasta heavy on the sauce. I used jarred sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil and used that instead of additional olive oil. I plan to make it for a spring potluck!

  9. Pua says

    OBSESSED with this meal! We have it weekly and could eat it every single day. My two young babies (3 yrs and 1 yr old) happily jump into their high chairs when they know we’re having this for dinner. Even my non-vegan friends love it. All around win!

  10. Nikki says

    The first time I made this I used fat free dry sundried tomatoes, addional oil and normal wheat fusilli but It didn’t turn out as well as it should have.

    Tonight I changed it and used more sundried tomatoes but in oil and more basil. Also I used GF Quinona, Millet and Buckwheat spirals, which was what made it delish! Just a heads up if you are using a Ninja or Nutri bullet with food processor attachments to make this you will def need addional oil or water to get it to blend properly into the right texture.

    Thank you for the great recipe (It was so good) it will be on our rotation from now on!

  11. Carrie Pomeroy says

    Is this intended to be made with sun-dried tomatoes in oil or with the really dry tomatoes that are so dry they’re hard to the touch? If so, should the tomatoes be rehydrated in hot water before using? Thank you!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Carrie, we like to make this with the Trader Joe’s sun-dried tomatoes that are dry, but soft (they come in a small white package). If using sun-dried tomatoes in oil, omit the 1/4 cup olive oil. If using dehydrated sun-dried tomatoes, rehydrate in hot water and add additional oil, if needed. Hope that helps!

  12. Kristin says

    After reading the reviews on this recipe, I am so confused how this came out so poorly for me. Four raw cloves of garlic was WAY too much, and I am a garlic lover who can handle lots of spice (including raw jalapenos). My mouth was completely on fire eating this. I ended up having a glass of red wine to help cut the burning feeling on my tongue, as drinking water was just spreading the pain (making lemonade out of lemons, ha). If I make this recipe again, I will use 2 cloves of garlic at most.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Is it possible your garlic cloves were on the larger side? That would be our best guess! Better luck next time!

  13. Elizabeth Hyatt says

    This recipe is so unbelievably easy to make. I truly dislike cooking food, but this is easy. Not only is it beyond easy, it is absolutely SO delicious. This pasta satisfies every savory craving I have and I could just go on and on.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yes, that should work! You may need to reduce the olive oil, garlic, and/or vegan parmesan to compensate. Hope that helps! If you give it a try, we would love to hear how it goes!

  14. Emma J says

    I made this last week. Everyone LOVED it. I will be making it again this week. Nothing wrong with pasta 2 weeks in a row? Right? Hehe. Love this website. Thank you! ?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks so much for the sweet note and lovely review, Emma. 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

  15. Elines Acevedo says

    I made this last summer for my wedding. We had a simple, afordable, casual wedding and I made some of the food, including our wedding cake. People were apprehensive about it being a vegan wedding but, this dish(I multiplied it obviously to feed more people) was one of the first things to go. People loved it! I didn’t even get to try it! So I looked it up now, because I happen to have the ingredients, and plan to make it again for my husband and myself, so I can finally try it. I remember it smelled really good. ?

    • Elines Acevedo says

      Update: Yumm. I made it with regular pasta and also made gardein chicken seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic, oil and lemon juice and zest at the end. Put it on the pasta and I’d say it was a success.

  16. Miranda R says

    I’ve made this recipe several times and my family + guests always love it! I often add chicken; sautee chicken in a pan first, add in pesto, mix in pasta. I brought this as a meal to eat during the Blue Ridge Relay and it was great to have as “real food” between legs.

  17. Heather says

    Delish, I followed the recipe exactly including using some of the pasta water. Super fast and easy to make and I was able to use my Vitamix. I picked the basil from my nieghbor’s yard, she will be happy to hear I made something so tasty out of her overgrown monster basil plant! I’ll save some for her next time, I ate it all this time around :)

  18. Blanka says

    Best ever pasta and so simple to put together! My second try and this time I nailed it right. Used sunndried tomatoes in oil from and a homemade pasta. Haven’t found enough basil in the garden so I improvised and used some fresh marjoram instead. It was a perfect match but good amount of basil would be just fine. Thanks for the great recipe.

  19. Sarah-Beth says

    So nice! I made this twice with half quantities and it made one serving for me. The sauce is delicious (I made it without the oil as my tomatoes came in oil) and instead of the parmazan I just used nutritional yeast (because I’m lazy), it worked really well and would be good cold in lunches I’m guessing?

  20. jeremy says

    Love it!! Seriously, it was so good, I could eat it straight outa the blender, but that would give me a stomach ache. Really rich and tangy!! :) We left out the cheese, but put in some salt to compensate. Also, you could add some lemon juice and/or pepper. And pine nuts. Great recipe!

  21. Chloe says

    This was absolutely delicious! I added broccoli to mine and it was so yummy. Will be saving this recipe for future reference :)

  22. Haley says

    Made this for dinner tonight and did not disappoint! I made it with Banza chickpea pasta and it was super yummy and filling!

  23. Linda T says

    First time posting a review on a recipe on this beautiful website that is my go-to for tasty recipes for at least 3 years now and have shared and raved endlessly to many. I have probably made at least 30 different recipes that have all been stellar hits with family, friends and charity bake sales. I made this pasta for the first time today and it literally blew my mind. Hands down one of the easiest and tasiest things I’ve ever made. Will be making this for the rest of my life and beyond. Seriously good.

    Thanks Dana!!

  24. Candy says

    Hello, im wondering what’s the best replacement for garlic?
    I feel like garlic gives a dish a flavour boost, if removed, the sauce may taste bland?
    I want to make this for a friend but she’s allergic to garlic/onions.

    Thanks so much!!

  25. Kimberley says

    I used your exact instructions to serve 4 people. I filled the other half of the plate with broccoli and mushrooms cooked in veg broth and a tiny bit of garlic. Everyone loved it. Thank you.

  26. Denise says

    Made this last night over zuchinni noodles and it was delicious. Can’t wait to eat the leftovers for lunch

  27. Tomas says

    Every time I bought sundried tomatoes, they were extremely salty. So I’m little hesitant to make this – won’t the meal be too salty when so many sundried tomatoes are used? Or I’m just buying different tomatoes than the recipe calls for?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi there! My favorite sun dried tomatoes are from trader joe’s and they aren’t salted or packed in oil. But if you’re worried about salt, don’t add any on the front end and adjust accordingly!

      • Tomas says

        Thanks! We don’t have Trader Joe’s here in Ireland and all sun-dried tomatoes I’ve found were either overly salty or packed in oil. I guess I’ll just have to try this recipe with less tomatoes and possibly add more next time if it’s not overly salty :)

  28. Holly Burke says

    This was absolutely amazing!! I tossed it with zucchini noodles. Will definitely make again. Highly recommend! See pics on Twitter: @hollyhoneyburke

  29. Caleb says

    I would put maybe half the Garlic in this recipe. It could have been a particularly strong bunch of Garlic, but I found the taste of garlic overpowered the basil and sun-dried tomatoes (two already very potent flavours). Will make again, with that modification.

  30. Tiffany says

    AWESOME!!! I made this the other night and I’m making it again tonight! So goooooooood! Thanks so much for the recipe it’s our new favorite

  31. Tiffany says

    Wow. Amazing!! This meal was fantastic! Before making it I was worried I would want more sauce, so I prepared a pot of garlic tomatoe pasta sauce with vegan “meat”-balls too.. but I definitely did not need it. This pasta recipe is sooooo good!! We did add the sauce and “meat”balls on top and it was still great and even more filling, but now I know this recipe is perfect as it is! Thanks so much! This is now a regular recipe in our house!

  32. Sandi says

    This is a refreshing change from tomato sauce. It turned out sooo good. I found if you leave it sit for 15 minutes, covered to stay warm, all the flavors blend together and make it bursting with flavor. I can’t wait to eat the leftovers :)

  33. Laine says

    I’m not one to leave reviews on recipes, but for this one I had to.
    I made a large double batch of this for Easter today! The rest of my family, who are not “vegan” and are overly skeptical of food that I make because it is always vegan, RAVED about this pasta. I love being able to share that being vegan is super easy and tasty. I also added the juice of one lemon to the recipe.

    Thanks for the wonderful recipe :) xx

  34. Melissa Lawrence says

    Hi Dana! I live in the Middle East, so it’s difficult to find fresh basil. Can I substitute cilantro? Thank you!! Love your recipes! They have really helped my husband and I transition from a vegetarian to a plant-based diet. I have shared them with others who are looking to eat more plant-based. xo

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      That should work! It will be different, but still be delicious. Thanks for following along!

  35. Casey says

    Made this tonight and the boyfriend and I loved it. Big basil pesto fans and this was amazing! What makes it even better is that it’s vegan! Wins all around. Thanks heaps! :)

  36. Cindy says

    I made this yesterday and it’s great! Quick and easy and can be spiced up based on dietary preferences. I added shrimp and it was a perfect meal.

  37. Kim says

    Ok so, I have been craving pesto for a while but haven’t been able to eat it due to my recent intolerance to dairy. When I came across this recipe, I knew it’d be great because every other recipe I’ve made from you guys has been delicious! I was not disappointed. Maaaan this is good! Added it to some pasta and sautéed veggies. My taste buds are happy, as is my stomach :) Thank you so much for this recipe!

  38. Jessi says

    I can’t talk enough about how great this recipe is! So simple and so tasty! I recommend this to my friends all the time – I actually have some cooking right now and I’m very excited. =D

  39. Sam says

    Oh man, this was SO GOOD! Even my boyfriend, who isn’t fond of red sauce or tomatoes in his pasta, said this was the best noodle dish he ever had.

  40. Alli says

    My sauce looks GROSS. I added lemon juice and pine nuts because I thought those were traditional pesto ingredients. Instead of a vibrant green and vibrant red color, my sauce is an ugly brown color.

  41. Nica says

    I made this with zoodles and topped it with a dash of homemade bacon bits ;). It was delightful, a do again for sure! Thank you for posting!

  42. theresa says

    well lets just say this I am Italian food is my passion along with my beautiful summer garden… when i was looking for a easy summer dish that just felt like summer i thought of sun dried tomatos!!!! what i didnt think FOR THE LIFE OF ME!!!!!!! Is that it would taste like HEAVEN!!!!! IF HEAVEN HAS A TASTE IT IS THIS DISH, LOL I MEAN REALLY. it was as if i never cooked or even ate for that matter. I went on facebook twitter and every other thing i could find just to tell the world how Amazing this was.
    Silly what can I say. when its THAT good, people need to know about it. so just came from the store with soe pine nuts to toast and put in this recipe yet again another night.
    the only thing i did different was chop everything oh so fine almost a paste my 14 year old broke my NINGA!!! ugh love it thank you and keep cooking. if you can help me detox in 5 days than life is really good ;)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Sure! It will have a more pungent nutritional yeast flavor, but it should work. Let me know how it goes!

      • Caitlin says

        Awesome thanks! I ended up just going back to the market to get the cashews; to make the cheese lol I was just being lazy.

  43. Joy says

    Yummy! My 2 year old actually ate dinner and danced and sang while he ate it! This recipe is in regular rotation now.

  44. Holly says

    I have made this recipe 4 times already, and am making it again right now! I LOVE it. It’s currently my go-to recipe (obviously). :)

  45. Roxanne says

    Back in my “before I knew how to cook” college days, I used to buy mass quantities of noodles and an occasional jar of sun dried tomato pesto. I had that for dinner more times than I’d like to admit. This reminded me of a grown up version of my college favorite. This recipe is super easy to make and delicious.

  46. Rose Wallace says

    Made this tonight and it was so delicious! I make a standard kale/sun dried tomato pesto that I keep on hand pretty much 24/7, so now I’m excited to try that out on pasta too.

    I loved the vegan parmesan. Nom Nom Nom! :)

    Thanks for the great recipe, it’s now part of my cooking repertoire. :)

  47. Gabby S says

    Made this this morning and put it in scrambled eggs. For anyone that hasn’t tried it, pesto eggs are delicious! Would also be great in a tofu scramble, I think. Thanks for the great recipe! It’s hard to find store-bought pesto that doesn’t contain cheese.

  48. Amy @ Accidental Happy Baker says

    Yes, this, now. I love pasta salad, but I hate how so many of them are loaded with junk ingredients.

  49. Anna @ Sunny Side Ups says

    SO YUMMY!! :) I think I’m changing my dinner plans for tonight…I’ve just gotta have that pesto sauce–looks absolutely delish!!

  50. zoe says

    This is the first recipe I’ve actually followed completely on your site (and possibly on any food blog). I never follow recipes perfectly. I usually try to put my own spin on things. I even made the parmesan specifically for it. Actually I lied. I used walnuts for the parmesan instead of cashews. It turned out brilliant. My BF LOVED it!

  51. Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking says

    What great timing! I was just looking through my pantry and wondered what to make with the sundried tomatoes I have in there. Yes! I am so making this during the week!

  52. Sue Ann Jaffarian says

    Made this last night. It was so easy and fast! The sauce was done before the pasta water was even boiling. SUPER YUMMY! Will make again and again and again.

  53. Ani says

    Love this! I made it for lunch but replaced sun-dried tomatoes with marinated capsicum and added a handful of spinach to the sauce. Delicious :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      It refrigerates well for a few days! Just let it warm back up a little before eating or it can be a bit stiff. I haven’t tried freezing it but assume it would work, too!

  54. Alexa [fooduzzi.com] says

    This looks wonderful! Sun-dried tomatoes have the best flavor – that tomato-y goodness is so concentrated…LOVE!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      SMART! Wish I could join you in the cheese party. Let me know how it goes! Great idea with the chili flakes, too. I love a spicy kick ;D

  55. Leah says

    In my opinion, the ONLY thing better than pesto is sun-dried tomato pesto. Can’t wait to make this this week!

  56. Rebecca Jacobs says

    Oh my gosh…delicious! Too funny I am hosting a healthy weeknight meals on a budget class for my clients this Wed and have a pesto pasta on the menu and will totally be sharing your recipe with the group! Super yummy.

  57. Anna says

    This must be good! Olive oil, garlic and parmesan is a divine combination! Just wanted to let everybody know, Trader Joe’s has nice, inexpensive brown rice pasta.

  58. Ana says

    That is soooo simple and quick and easy- perfect for summer! I always seem to want to try more recipes but with less ‘prep’ in summer! And eat lots of pasta. I always want to eat lots of pasta

  59. S Lauren | Modern Granola says

    This looks sooo good! I love sun-dried tomatoes, but don’t eat them enough! This is a must try!

  60. Taylor @ The Girls on Bloor says

    LOVE sundried tomatoes! Have never thought of making this as a pesto but it definitely seems alot healthier than the jarred tomato sauce. Will be trying this with portobello mushrooms and chicken!!

  61. Emma {Emma's Little Kitchen} says

    I bet this packs quite the flavour punch! Perfect for a little al fresco dining :)

    • Tom ~ Raise Your Garden says

      Totally agree. Bring on summer and good eating on the patio! With the pesto and sun dried tomatoes, you have won my heart. This looks absolutely smashing delish. Another home run guys!