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10 minute lower fat basil pesto pasta from scratch

We make a lot of pesto and love it. Often people can forget how easy it is to make and how tasty it can be when made fresh. Here we use half oil, half water to make the pesto lower in fat while still tastes great. This dinner can be made in 5 mins from scratch and is still super satisfying and delicious but if you are not in a rush take your time and you will still make it in 10 mins. It makes a great lunch the next day or even brunch. We recommend using a mild tasting olive oil (low acidity) but if you don’t have this use sunflower oil instead as it is more neutral tasting. We designed this so that it is really quick to make so use whole wheat noodles instead of pasta as the noodles cook in half the time but if you have the time and prefer pasta simply replace with this. 

In the below video we use 150ml of oil but if you want it to be lower in fat simple replace with 75ml water and 75ml oil to reduce the fat content.


Serves 2-4 (depending on how hungry you are!)

Takes 10 mins

Lower fat basil pesto (makes 350g)


2-3 cloves of garlic (8g)

75 ml water

75 ml neutral tasting olive oil 

1 teaspoon salt

juice of ½ a lime (approx. 10ml)

100g roasted cashew nuts

50g fresh basil 

4 nest of wholewheat noodles (200g total)

a handful of cherry tomatoes (180g)


To garnish

chilli flakes

pink peppercorns

Fill and boil the kettle for the noodles and gather your ingredients for the pesto.


Pour the boiled water in a medium sized pot and boil the noodles as per the instructions on the pack. This should take approx 4 mins. 


While the noodles are boiling, it is time to make the pesto:


Peel the cloves of garlic and put into a blender or food processor together with the rest of the pesto ingredients except the basil. If using a normal blender, first separate the basil leaves from the stalks before adding in. If you have a high speed blender, use both the leaves and the stalks of the basil and blend till smooth. Taste and adjust to your liking by adding more salt or lemon juice or if it is too strong add a little more oil to dilute the flavours.


When ready, drain and rinse the noodles, and transfer to a frying pan or a large pot together with all the pesto. Mix well so the pesto is evenly spread through the noodles. Add the cherry tomatoes in and heat up. 


When serving, garnish with chilli flakes and pink peppercorns for a colourful effect.


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