This hearty pesto pasta recipe gets dinner on the table in half an hour and only uses one pot in the process. An easy Homemade Vegan Pesto is packed full of fresh herbs and cheesy flavor (thanks to nutritional yeast) so the tender penne noodles are coated in a dreamy green sauce. Toss in some red beans, juicy tomatoes, crunchy carrot, and tangy red onion to add extra good-for-you ingredients to this Italian-inspired dish. This recipe also yields a large amount, so make this for meal prep to enjoy throughout the week!

By Nancy Macklin, RDN, Jun 2, 2022


  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 8 oz. dry whole wheat penne pasta
  • ½ cup chopped red onion
  • ½ cup chopped carrot
  • 1 recipe Homemade Vegan Pesto or ¾ cup purchased oil-free vegan pesto
  • 2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes
  • 1 15-oz. can no-salt-added red beans, rinsed and drained (1½ cups)
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. In a large pot combine the first four ingredients (through carrot) and ½ cup Homemade Vegan Pesto. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 8 to 12 minutes or until pasta is just tender.
  2. Stir in tomatoes, beans, and the remaining pesto sauce. Season with salt and pepper.

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