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Simple Tomato Pesto Pasta a great lunch box meal

Simple Tomato Pesto Pasta

A simple pasta recipe that can be eaten warm or cold and it's perfect for lunch boxes.
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Course: Pasta
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 367kcal
Author: Mariam E.


  • 8 oz. penne pasta
  • 3 cups colored grape tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. chopped garlic
  • 1 tsp salt or more to taste
  • 1 tbsp. black pepper
  • 2 tbsp. pesto sauce
  • 1/2 cup water from pasta
  • 2 tsps. pepper flakes optional
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese


  • Prepare the pasta according to package directions. Save 1/2 cup of the pasta water.
  • Wash and dry the tomatoes I used the multi colored grape tomatoes. In a frying pan, heat 3 tbsps. of olive oil and sauté the chopped garlic for 20-30 seconds. Add in the tomatoes and give them a toss then cover and let them cook on medium heat until the tomatoes are super tender.
  • Remove lid and mash the tomatoes to obtain a paste texture. You can leave a few pieces that are not mash all the way through if you prefer.
  • Add in the black pepper, chili flakes (optional), pasta water, salt and pesto sauce. Sauté the ingredients together on simmer for 2 minutes and then add in the cooked pasta and cook together for 3-4 minutes on low heat so the pasta absorbs all the sauce.
  • Remove and serve. You can add some fresh basil or freshy grated parmesan cheese to finish off the toppings.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 367kcal | Protein: 9.4g | Fat: 15.1g | Saturated Fat: 2.3g | Sodium: 668.6mg | Sugar: 5.3g
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