Pasta with Edamame Pesto

Edamame Pesto

Two foods I long ago fell in love with – irrevocably- are pesto and hummus. I play around a lot with each, and usually just a slight tweak of ingredients throws up new and delightful flavors.

And then there is edamame. The crunchy soybean is so delicious, so versatile and so pretty, I am always trying to find new ways to cook it.

Now I am a big fan of edamame hummus, and it is something I whip up almost weekly in my kitchen. The decadent, creamy taste makes it easy to forget that this snack is actually really good for you.

This week I was craving edamame hummus, but I only had time to make a simple pasta dinner that I could also pack in my and Desi’s lunchboxes the next day. I also knew I had a limited number of veggies on hand: half a bunch of watercress being among them.

Then it hit me – edamame pesto!

It couldn’t have been easier to make, with just a few tweaks to the hummus recipe, and the result was beyond delicious. The grooves in the penne soak up the creaminess of the tofu and the sunny flavor of cumin, olive oil and capers. I also mix in crunchy walnuts at the very end to give this dish even more complexity, nutrition and flavor.


Pasta with Edamame Pesto
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 10
  • 1 cup edamame (shelled), microwaved for a couple of minutes with a few tablespoons of water until just tender.
  • ½ cup watercress leaves, chopped
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup silken soft tofu
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds, powdered
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup capers, drained
  • 1 cup walnuts, toasted lightly and chopped coarsely
  • 1 13.5-oz box of Penne Rigate Pasta (I used whole-wheat, although this would work as well with regular pasta)
  1. Salt the pasta water and cook the pasta per package directions until al dente.
  2. To a food processor, add the edamame, tofu, garlic, watercress, cumin powder and red pepper flakes. Add salt to taste.
  3. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil until the pesto comes together in a smooth, creamy sauce with a lovely pale green color.
  4. Remove the cooked pasta to a bowl and add the pesto sauce, capers and walnuts.
  5. Toss to coat the pasta evenly with the sauce.
  6. You can also add some pre-roasted veggies like bell peppers and zucchini or even some sliced avocados for a delicious and healthy meal in minutes!

(C) All recipes and photographs copyright of Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.

9 thoughts on “Pasta with Edamame Pesto

  1. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    February 10, 2008 at 7:03am

    Mez also a fan of Pesto….lovely pic, makes me hungry

    My first time here, flew here along with the wind….nice blog u have got here

  2. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Happy cook

    February 10, 2008 at 9:22am

    I don’t know what edamame is.
    The dish just looks so delicious

  3. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    February 10, 2008 at 10:07am

    looks great :-) I also love trying out different kinds of pesto.

  4. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    February 10, 2008 at 10:10pm

    edamame hummus – what a great idea!!!

  5. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    February 11, 2008 at 1:19am

    Thanks Bhags, Raaga, Anke.
    Happy Cook- edamame are soybeans. They are very nutty-tasting and a beautiful jewel-green color. They are also very, very nutritious with a high protein and fiber content. I usually get them at the frozen foods section in the local supermarket.

  6. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    February 18, 2008 at 3:49am

    My my. I have made vegan pesto with basil, but not edamame. I never liked watercress. Let me try this with basil. Thanks for the idea.

  7. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    February 24, 2008 at 8:34pm

    I’ve made variations of this twice so far! Thanks for the great idea!

  8. Permalink  ⋅ Reply


    February 24, 2008 at 10:51pm

    Sagari, Thanks!

    Suganya- Thanks! Do let me know how it turns out with the basil.

    Anardana- So glad you tried this. And happy it worked out for you!

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