Do you guys remember my post a while ago about homemade pesto? It’s time to break out the basil and pine nuts again. This pasta salad is just begging for some fresh, homemade pesto to hold it all together. Sun dried tomatoes, asparagus, chicken, and your pesto toss together with pasta to make a colorful summer pasta salad.
I used whole wheat pasta for this dish. Its a great way to get some extra fiber in your meal.
One of my favorite things about this Pesto Pasta dish is that it can be served cold or warm. Served warm with the creamy pesto steaming off of the chicken is always a delicious choice, but I think I actually prefer it cold. I package it up into individual Tupperware containers (like with the Roadtrip Turkey Salad) and my food is all prepped for delicious, healthy meals for the week. Then I can just grab it out of the fridge in the morning and I’m all set.
I’ve also relied on this dish for having guests over for lunch. I don’t know about you but when I have family or friends over, I am always running around at the last minute trying to straighten up & make sure everything looks nice. I convince myself that it is totally necessary to personalize little touches such as the books and magazines on the coffee table to the people who are coming over, light candles around the house so that everything smells pretty, and change the throw pillows to match the season. You know, all of the important things to worry about… I can make this Pesto Pasta ahead of time and pull it out at the last minute. That frees me up to run around like a crazy person!
- 8 ounces medium shell pasta
- 1 pound asparagus, trimmed
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup homemade pesto
- 1/3 cup julienned sun dried tomatoes in olive oil, drained
- 2 cooked chicken breasts, shredded
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil on the stove top.
- Add pasta to the boiling water and cook for approximately 8-11 minutes or until al dente, then drain.
- Spread asparagus on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
- Roast for 8-12 minutes, or until a fork can slide into the asparagus with a little resistance.
- Chop asparagus in half.
- In a large bowl, combine pasta, asparagus, pesto, sun dried tomatoes, and chicken.
- Toss until all ingredients are well coated.