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Mary Berry’s Spaghetti with Peas and Pesto

Mary Berry's pea pesto recipe is super simple to make, and a great option for a busy midweek evening. Peas will add a fresh sweetness to your pesto and the switch from pine nuts to cashews will add an extra creamy texture.

From the book


A quick and easy midweek pasta dish. Adding peas to the pesto gives a lovely natural fresh flavour. Use fresh garden peas, if you grow them, instead of petits pois. We have used cashew nuts instead of pine nuts in the pesto to give creaminess to the sauce.

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350g (12 oz) spaghetti
For the pea pesto:
250g (9oz) frozen petits pois
115g (4oz) unsalted cashew nuts
55g (2oz) Parmesan, grated, plus extra to serve (optional)
2 large garlic cloves, halved
Large bunch of basil, roughly chopped
100ml (3½ fl oz) olive oil

Essential kit

You will need: a food processor.


Cook the peas in a saucepan of boiling water for 3 minutes. Drain and refresh under cold water. Drain again.

Place half the peas in a small food processor and add the nuts, cheese, garlic and basil. Whiz until finely chopped. Slowly add the oil, a little a time, until you have a paste consistency. Season with salt to taste.

Cook the spaghetti in boiling salted water according to the packet instructions. Reserve 50ml (2fl oz) of the pasta water before draining.

Place the pesto in a large non-stick frying pan, add the reserved peas and the cooked spaghetti and a little of the pasta water. Toss everything over a high heat until well coated.

Season well with freshly ground black pepper and serve with extra Parmesan, if liked.

Mary’s Tips: Best made and served. The pea pesto can be made up to 6 hours ahead.

Not suitable for freezing.


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From the book: Mary Berry Cook and Share

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