Pea Shoot & Pumpkin Seed Pesto Penne

By: @eden_owenjones

A simply stunning symphony of flavours and textures creating such an exciting and enjoyable plant-based pasta dish. The lemon elevates and freshens the dish whilst the warm undertones of the red onion remain comforting.

 This dish showcases seasonal British ingredients at their best.

 A simple pleasure and an excellent recipe to have up your sleeve for those ‘flexitarian’ days.

 Serves 2.


  • 150g Yorkshire Pasta Penne Rigate


  • 30g pea shoots
  • 30g pumpkin seeds, toasted
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 juice of 1 lemon
  • 150ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed and minced
  • salt
  • Pepper


  • 5-6 stalks purple sprouting broccoli
  • 1 small red onion.
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1

Place a saucepan of water onto boil with a tbsp of sea salt.

Step 2

The quickest way to make the pesto is by placing the pea shoots, pumpkin seeds, garlic and lemon juice in a food processor (or blending with a hand blender) and blending until smooth. Then mix in the nutritional yeast and olive oil by hand and season to taste – adding more olive oil to loosen the pesto if desired. This will give you more pesto than you need for this recipe, but it will keep in the fridge with a little oil covering the top for a few days.

You can also do this process in a pestle and mortar or simply by chopping everything finely by hand.

Step 3

Peel and slice your red onion, I like to do this by keeping the core intact so I get nice pieces with several layers together. Then chop your broccoli into bite size pieces.

Step 4

Place the broccoli and onion in a preheated pan with the olive oil, on a medium high heat. Sprinkle over a little salt, then stir occasionally, allowing for some colour to form on the veg. Remove from the heat when cooked through and set aside.

Step 5

Cook the pasta as per packet instructions and reserve some of the pasta water.

Step 6

When the pasta is almost cooked, strain and add back into the pan along with a few good dollops of pesto, 3/4 of your veg and a few splashes of pasta water and return to the heat. Continuously stir everything together and add more pasta water if necessary for the pasta to cook through and to develop a silky consistency.

Step 7

To serve place the rest of the veg on top of your pasta and drizzle over a little olive oil.