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Conchiglie Pasta With Kale Pesto

Conchiglie Pasta with Kale-Walnut Pesto
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Pasta
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Vaishali ยท Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes


  • 1 24- oz box of small pasta. (I used whole-wheat conchiglie which are tiny, adorable, shell-shaped pasta)
  • A small bunch of asparagus spears , tough ends removed, then cut lengthwise into 3/4-inch pieces (store the tough ends for vegetable stock).
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 8 large leaves of kale , tough stems removed
  • 4 cloves garlic , smashed and chopped
  • 1 cup walnuts , lightly toasted (this is easy to do in the microwave. Spread the walnuts in a plate and microwave on high for a minute. Toss them around, then microwave for another minute)
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 heaping tbsp white miso
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Juice of one large lemon


  • Bring a large pot of water to boil. Dunk in the kale leaves. Bring the water back to a boil and let the kale leaves cook for five minutes. Then, using a pair of tongs, fish out the kale leaves and set them aside. Bring the water to a boil again and add your pasta.
  • About five minutes before the pasta is cooked, add the chopped asparagus.
  • Meanwhile, assemble the pesto. Place the cooked kale, 1/2 cup of toasted walnuts, nutritional yeast, miso, garlic and olive oil in a food processor or blender.
  • Process into a paste. I processed mine pretty smooth this time, but you can leave it coarse if you like your pesto that way. The jewel-green color of this sauce has to be seen to be believed-- it's just gorgeous.
  • Mix the pesto, cooked pasta and asparagus, lemon juice, and remaining walnuts in a large bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste, if desired.
  • Serve and enjoy!