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  • Writer's pictureGauricka Agarwaal

Vegan Basil pesto Pasta and Chickpea Salad

A plant-based lifestyle seems like the trend and we’re sure its here to stay. While, it may be difficult for a lot of people to shift suddenly and completely, but its a good idea to incorporate it in your daily meals whenever you can.

So, here is recipe for a vegan pesto, and we chose to make this because you can actually use it in many ways and multiple times in your meals, without having to repeat the exact same dish very often. You can spread it on toast and top it with veggies, use it as a pasta sauce or a base for ravioli stuffing, marinate chicken, cottage cheese or tofu before grilling, use as a pizza sauce, dressing for salads and many many ways. We’ll share more recipes using this soon. Here, we’re making a pasta and chickpea salad with the vegan pesto. This is a healthy and refreshing meal for the summer season. For the recipe of a regular basil pesto click here.

We’ve made this recipe especially during these testing times where we’re in a global fight against Covid-19. So, we thought of making this a healthy recipe with some immunity-boosting ingredients to help you stay safe during this time, and later. Along with basil, we’re adding a bit of holy basil, which is known to have vitamin-C and antioxidants among other nutrients and helps build a stronger immune system. Basil too has antioxidants, therapeutic and anti-inflammatory properties.

You can also add any other seeds that you want to add to your diet, we’re adding pumpkin seeds because they’re packed with nutrients.They are very high in antioxidants, magnesium, fibre among others and are known to reduce inflammation, regulate blood sugar levels, good for heart health, quality sleep and immunity booster. The list goes on!

Garlic has a whole list of health benefits too. It is a heart healthy ingredients which also boosts immunity and contains antioxidants. Its also known to reduce inflammation and protects against common cold and flu.

Pine nuts too, are very healthy. Rich source of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and helps build resistance against infections.

Olive Oil, again packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties and reduces the risk of many diseases. We’re using extra virgin olive oil here.

In short, this vegan recipe is high on health benefits, rich in plant nutrients, packed with immunity boosting antioxidants, easy to make and a must try for all of you out there!

To begin, put all the ingredients for pesto in a blender and puree to a coarse consistency.

Put the boiled pasta, boiled chickpeas and olives in a bowl.

Add pesto to the bowl and mix well.

You can serve it warm or cold, as per your liking. Serve it on a pasta plate and enjoy!

Recipe: Vegan Basil Pesto & Chickpea Salad


25 gm Genovese Basil Leaves 10-12 Tulsi/Holy Basil Leaves 2 tbsp Pine nuts 2 tbsp Pumpkin seeds 5-6 cloves Garlic, peeled 3-4 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil 200 gm Pasta, dried 75 gm chickpeas dried 10-12 black olives, sliced Salt Freshly Crushed Pepper


  1. Soak chickpeas overnight and cook till soft. Drain and keep aside. If using canned chickpeas just drain and use 200 grams of drained chickpeas.

  2. Bring a lot of water in a pasta pot to boil with 1-2 tsp salt. Add the pasta and cook till al dente. Drain and keep aside saving a little pasta water.

  3. Take Basil, Tulsi, Garlic, Pine nuts and Pumpkin Seeds in a grinder and grind. Add olive oil and grind to a paste.

  4. In a big mixing bowl toss together pasta, chickpeas and olives. Take half the basil pesto and dilute with 3-4 tbsp of pasta water to make a dressing. Add to the bowl and mix well.

  5. Season with salt and pepper. Enjoy your vegan salad warm or chilled.

  6. Freeze the remaining basil pesto and use later.

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