Lemony Avocado Pesto

Avo Pesto 2

We’ve been loving up on some citrus all winter. The brightness gets us through the grey doldrums when fresh veggies are few and far between. Avocados and citrus are made for each other in our pesto. They cozy up with all the vegetables for a go-to weeknight dinner. Get a big pot of water boiling and dinner is on the table in TEN MINUTES.   Enough for 4.



1 Pound Pasta

I like Farfalle or Radiatore for this dish. The chunky sauce works best with chunkier pasta. Use what you’ve got or run to the store to get funky.

2 Pounds Green Veggies

I used one pound fresh green beans and 1 pound frozen organic peas. I love these with the lemon and basil.

2 Avocados

1 C Coarsely Chopped Pistachios

Preferably raw, unsalted. You’ll need to majorly adjust for the salt elsewhere in this dish if you can’t find unsalted. Either way, chop those babies!

1/8 C Fresh Dried Basil

Oxymoron right? What I mean to say is…. don’t use that stuff in your cabinet that you purchased in a big jar somewhere in the late 90s. Dried herbs should be ditched annually. Make sure you are using the good stuff if you want any flavor at all.


2 Organic Lemons

Zested and juiced. Organic is easy to find and the ONLY thing to use when you plan on using the zest (which you are)

1 Tbs Crushed Red Pepper

Salt & Pepper

Olive Oil


Large Pot

Large Mixing Bowl


The Pasta

  1. Add pasta to salted boiling water. Set timer for 7 minutes.
  2. At 5 minute mark, add fresh green beans to same pot.
  3. At 3 minute mark, add peas.
  4. When timer goes off, check pasta for doneness.(Al Dente, People!)
  5. Drain all preserving 1 C pasta water to add to sauce.
    TIP: I’ve collected these tips from various TV chefs over the years, both mandatory when cooking pasta. I am putting them in quotes, but I couldn’t tell you which Giada De La Batali actually said them.
    “Don’t salt the water until it is boiling. If you add the salt before, it will sink to the bottom and can scar your pot. I learned this lesson the hard way.”
    “Your pasta water should taste like the sea. This is the only opportunity you have to season your pasta.”

The Pesto

  1. Zest both lemons over large mixing bowl. Reserve half the zest to the side.
  2. Juice both lemons into same bowl.
  3. Dice and scoop out both avocados into bowl. Give a quick toss – the lemon juice keeps the avos green and beautiful.
  4. Add pistachios and mash together with a fork.
  5. Add crushed red pepper and olive oil. Start with 1/4 C and drizzle more if needed. after pasta assembly.
  6. Season to taste with salt and pepper


  1. Add pasta, veggies, and pasta water to the bowl with avocado mixture.
  2. Mix together until just combined.
  3. Plate and garnish with remaining lemon zest.


Beef this up with chicken or quinoa or serve cold the next day.


Sometimes your inner-carnivore needs a break. The best part of eating vegan for a night is how damn quick prep-time is! This baby can be on the table in under 20 minutes. The lemony brightness and all the veggies make this pasta dish something your people will want every week.

We hope you enjoy this as much as we do!

We showed you ours, now show us yours. Tag your sexy sustenance @properlyforked   or   #properly forked

Avo Pesto 1

Recipe created and tested in Properly Forked kitchen.





2 thoughts on “Lemony Avocado Pesto

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