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Beef Pesto Pasta

4 servings


5 minutes

active time

20 minutes

total time


3 cups basil leaves (loosely packed, leaves trimmed from stems)

1/2 cup pistachio nuts

2-3 cloves garlic

1/2 cup pecorino romano cheese (Note 1 )

1/3 cup/80 ml olive oil

2 tbsp lemon juice (Note 2)

1 tbsp olive oil

500 grams/1 pound beef (cut into stir fry long thin strips)

1/4 tsp kosher salt (cooking salt)

1/4 tsp cracked black pepper

500 grams/1 pound penne pasta

1/2 cup reserved pasta water (Note 3)

pecorino romano cheese

basil leaves


Cook beef: add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a large saute pan, turn heat to high, add beef strips, salt and pepper. Cook till the beef has browned on all sides, using a silicon turner to help move the meat around in the pan.

Make pesto: add basil leaves, pistachio nuts, garlic, pecorino romano cheese to the bowl of a food processor. Blitz to combine for about 15 seconds and scrap the insides of the bowl down with a spatula once done. Pour in the olive oil and then continue to blitz. Taste the pesto, add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and add the 2nd tablespoon as needed. Blitz till consistently combined then transfer combined pesto to a small bowl.

Cook pasta: read and follow the instructions on the packet to cook the pasta in a medium saucepan of boiling salted water. Moments before it is done, use a heatproof jug to scoop out 1 to 2 cups of the water. Then drain the pasta into the sink using a colander and discard the remaining pasta water.

Combine: add the cooked drained pasta to a large saute pan, add in the cooked beef and dollop in the pesto. Pour in 1/2 cup of reserved pasta water. Then use a wooden spoon to toss the pasta, pesto, pasta water and beef till it is consistently combined.

Garnish: generously garnish the top of the combined steak and pesto pasta with grated pecorino romano, cracked black pepper and basil leaves. Provide utensils for serving.


Serving Size



819 kcal

Total Fat

34 g

Saturated Fat

6 g

Unsaturated Fat

26 g

Trans Fat



13 mg


312 mg

Total Carbohydrate

104 g

Dietary Fiber

7 g

Total Sugars

8 g


25 g

4 servings


5 minutes

active time

20 minutes

total time
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