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Pesto pasta with tomatoes, peas, and basil in a white bowl, surrounded by tomatoes and arugala.

Vegan Pesto Pasta Salad

  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 27 minutes
  • Yield: 16
  • Diet: Vegan


A Mediterranean diet inspired vegan pesto pasta salad that is loaded with veggies and tossed in a dairy-free walnut pesto sauce. The perfect dish to bring to summer parties and cookouts! 


Vegan Walnut Pesto

  • 1 cup baby arugula
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt (more to taste)
  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts

Pasta Salad

  • 1 pound rotini pasta (I used GF brown rice + quinoa pasta)
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1 cup chopped cherry tomatoes
  • 1 cup fresh baby arugula
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
  • sea salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil (optional)


  1. Make pesto sauce by adding arugula, basil, oil, lemon juice, garlic and salt in the bowl of a food processor and processing until smooth. Add the walnuts and pulse until the walnuts are ground to desired consistency. Set aside.
  2. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Rinse with cool water and drain. Let pasta cool for about 5-10 minutes. Add pasta to a large salad bowl and toss with thawed peas, tomatoes, arugula toasted walnuts and olive oil. Add pesto, starting with ½ cup. Taste and add more pesto if you’d like. I like my noodles coated so I used all the pesto. Taste and season liberally with salt and pepper. Pasta salad can be served immediately, cold or at room temperature.


  • I wanted to keep the recipe dairy-free but if you’re a cheese lover (like my husband) this pasta salad is delicious with a little feta added.
  • Category: Pasta
  • Method: Boiling
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean


  • Serving Size: about 1/2 cup
  • Calories: 195
  • Sugar: 1g
  • Fat: 10g
  • Carbohydrates: 25g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 4g

Keywords: vegan pesto pasta

Parchment paper lined with protein balls.


Eating healthy doesn’t have to be boring!