Pesto is one of those things that truly tastes completely different when it’s homemade as opposed to store-bought. It’s also incredibly quick to make, 5 minutes max, and preparing it is as simple as blitzing some good-quality ingredients in a food processor.

Lately, I’ve been somewhat obsessed with all different kinds of pesto’s, as they make for such brilliant and quick weeknight homemade pasta sauces. So fresh and extremely rich in flavour. You can also experiment endlessly, so you’ll never get bored!

I already published quite a few homemade pesto and pasta combinations. My pasta with spinach and pecorino pesto recipe is ultra-green and super healthy, my pea and ricotta ravioli with mint pesto is very delicate and special and my pesto pasta salad with asparagus and sun-dried tomato recipe is based on the ultimate classic basil pesto.

But today I am excited to share my latest pesto discovery, this recipe for red pesto pasta!

Red pesto in food processor

Red pesto ingredients

What makes a great pesto? Any combination of some of the following ingredients: fresh herbs, extra-virgin olive oil, garlic, cheese, nuts and seeds. My version for this red pesto includes:

  • Sun-dried tomatoes: While the star ingredient in any red pesto, these are strong in flavour, so use in moderation.
  • Roasted peppers: Perfect in combination with the sun-dried tomatoes. I use a mix of red and yellow roasted peppers. You can use exclusively red, which will give you a slightly darker result.
  • Walnuts: A great alternative to pine nuts, used in the more classic pesto alla Genovese. Also less pricey, and incredibly healthy.
  • Garlic: Again, moderation is key. This also applies to the biggest garlic lovers, since we’re using raw garlic, very strong in flavour.
  • Parmesan cheese: I’m using Parmigiano Reggiano in this recipe, though Pecorino Romano or a mix of both would be delicious here too, should you have any.
  • Extra-virgin olive oil: The good quality one, essential.

How to make red pesto pasta

This recipe could not be easier and takes only 10 minutes, start to finish! Boil your favourite pasta, and meanwhile blitz all the ingredients for the pesto in a food processor.

When the pasta is cooked, drain and save two cups of pasta water. Mix the pasta with the pesto and, while stirring constantly, keep adding the pasta water until the desired consistency and the pasta is fully coated!


Red Pesto Pasta Recipe

  • Author: Michiel Steur
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


This 10-minute red pesto pasta, with sun-dried tomatoes, roasted peppers and walnuts will be your new favourite quick weeknight recipe!



  • 500g spaghetti (or any other pasta of choice)
  • 155g sun-dried tomatoes
  • 170g roasted peppers (mix of red and yellow)
  • 50g parmesan cheese
  • 30g walnuts
  • 5 fresh basil leaves
  • 50ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  • Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Cook spaghetti according to package instructions.
  • Meanwhile, blitz all remaining ingredients into a pesto, using a food processor or mini chopper.
  • Drain pasta, and save two cups of pasta water.
  • Return pasta to the pot, add the red pesto and stir vigorously. Keep stirring while adding a little bit of pasta water at a time, until you have reached the desired consistency and the pasta is fully coated in the pesto.
  • Divide between four bowls and top with some freshly grated black pepper. Serve immediately.

  • Category: Main course
  • Method: Boil
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • Calories: 630
  • Sugar: 2.2 g
  • Sodium: 783.7 mg
  • Fat: 17.5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.2 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 2.4 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 94.4 g
  • Fiber: 2.3 g
  • Protein: 21 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Keywords: red pesto pasta recipe, tomato pesto recipe, tomato pepper walnut pesto, homemade red pesto pasta, red pesto spaghetti recipe

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