There’s no way I could get enough cold pasta in the summer! It’s all I’m looking to consume! I had a half-batch of kale left over from a different recipe I cooked this week and made pesto kale pasta. With a price of 99 cents for a pound, it makes an affordable pesto than freshly picked basil and has an incredibly earthy taste (although it’s not for everyone, if you’re an avid kale fan in the first place, likely, you won’t be too keen on this recipe too). A generous amount of lemon juice, garlic, and some lemon zest in the final makes this pasta a fresh and vibrant dish perfect for summer.


My style is simple. I’ve included the most basic recipe below. If you’re in your budget to expand it, Add cut-up grilled chicken, halved grape tomatoes, or some salty artichoke hearts. It’s so good that I ate a bowl after taking the photos; however, adding a few other ingredients could transform it from an easy summer meal to a full-on feast.


1 lb pasta ($1.49)

4 cups of kale, chopped and loosely packed ($0.50)

1/3 cup of olive oil or as required ($0.82)

One large lemon (1/4 c juice, 1 Tbsp zest) ($0.75)

One clove of garlic ($0.08)

1/2 cup walnuts chopped ($0.57)

1/3 cup Parmesan grated ($0.55)

1/2 teaspoon salt, or as much as you need ($0.03)

Freshly cracked pepper, to taste ($0.05)

Four oz. mozzarella (optional) ($2.00)


Make a large pot of salted water to the point of boiling to prepare the pasta. After the water is boiling, add the pasta, and cook until the pasta is cooked. Then drain in a colander, and let it cool.

While the pasta cooks, make the pesto while the pasta is cooking, remove the kale leaves from the woody stems, then chop them up into strips. Place the leaves in a colander, and rinse them with cool water. Let the water that is left runoff.

Add the kale that has been chopped and washed into a food processor with olive oil and 1/4 cup juice from the garlic, lemon, and walnuts. Add Parmesan salt and pepper. Blend until the mixture is it is smooth, bright green. Add more oil as needed to make the mixture a smooth, thick sauce. Then taste the pesto and modify the salt, pepper, or lemon juice according to your preference. Put the pesto aside.

After the pasta has been rinsed and has cooled to the level where it’s no more steaming, transfer it into an enormous bowl. Incorporate about half of the pesto. Mix until the pasta has been evenly coated.

Slice the mozzarella into smaller cubes. Then mix it into the pasta with approximately one Tbsp of the juice of the lemon. Stir until it is combined and mix in the pesto. Continue adding pesto until everything is covered in a thick layer. Sprinkle with fresh cracked pepper, and serve, or chill until the food is ready for consumption.