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Spaghetti with Basil-Pistachio Pesto

Pistachios, a more affordable alternative to pine nuts, provide toothsome texture in this pesto pasta recipe from "Lidia's Italy in America," by Lidia Bastianich.

  • Servings: 6
Spaghetti with Basil-Pistachio Pesto

Source: The Martha Stewart Show


  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, plus more for cooking pasta
  • 3 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cups packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 1 cup unsalted pistachios, toasted
  • 8 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

  2. Place basil, parsley, pistachios, garlic, and salt in the bowl of a food processor; pulse to combine. With the machine running, add 1 1/2 cups olive oil in a slow, steady stream. Process until a smooth paste forms, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Transfer half of the pesto mixture to a large skillet; reserve remaining pesto for another use.

  3. Add spaghetti to boiling water and cook, according to package directions, until al dente. Drain pasta, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid. Add cooking liquid to skillet along with pasta and toss to combine. Drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with cheese; toss to combine and serve.

Reviews (1)

  • Saralynn35 12 Dec, 2011

    Great recipe! I love the texture, plus the fact that pistachios are so good for you!! I used Orandio Ranch, ARO Pistachios. Handcrafted with Himalayan Pinksalt, you can visit and get some of those wonderful pistachios!