Roasted chestnut & herb pesto pasta with mushrooms

Roasted chestnut & herb pesto pasta with mushrooms

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(13 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 15 mins


Serves 6
This seasonal pesto is a good way of using up any herbs that are knocking around the kitchen

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal582
  • fat29g
  • saturates4g
  • carbs70g
  • sugars3g
  • fibre4g
  • protein14g
  • salt0.2g
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  • 100g cooked chestnut



    'Chestnuts roasting on an open fire...' that kitsch old Nat King Cole song perfectly…

  • handful each basil, parsley and mint, leaves only



    There are several types of mint, each with its own subtle difference in flavour and appearance.…

  • 50g Parmesan, grated, plus extra to serve (optional)



    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…

  • 2 garlic clove
  • 150ml rapeseed oil
    Rapeseed oil

    Rapeseed oil

    If you want a light alternative to other cooking oils, rapeseed is a great choice and has…

  • 500g dried pasta



    Pasta is the Italian name for Italy's version of a basic foodstuff which is made in many…

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 250g pack chestnut mushroom, quartered


  1. Put the chestnuts in a food processor and pulse until roughly chopped. Throw in the herbs, Parmesan and garlic, then pulse again until chopped (not too finely). Pour in the rapeseed oil, mix together and season to taste.

  2. Cook the pasta in plenty of boiling salted water, according to pack instructions. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and fry the mushrooms with some seasoning for 6-8 mins until tender and starting to brown. When the pasta is cooked, drain it, return to the pan, then stir through the pesto and the mushrooms. Serve with some extra Parmesan on top, if you like.

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Comments (18)

heathcliffe's picture

I was stuck for ideas tonight, but with loads of herbs in the garden and a pack of chestnuts in the store cupboard, this was really good. The only tiny tweak I would make is to add a little lemon juice at the end to sharpen it up a bit

eviesapple's picture

This is a vegetarian recipe. Those who believe this is not true should look up the definition for a vegetarian. It means they don't eat meat or fish. Pesketarians eat fish, but not meat.
I think some of you are thinking of vegans. Vegans don't eat meat, but also don't eat animal products ie. milk, eggs, cheese, cream, butter, honey. No animal fats or animal derived ingredients (like gelatin) either.

izzbubz's picture

I'm not sure if the issues about parmesan are what you're referring to, however if they are I'd like to correct you. You're right about everything you've said, except this recipe isn't vegetarian unless vegetarian parmesan is used, as normal parmesan contains calf rennet. Just as most vegetarians will not eat products containing gelatin, most will also not eat parmesan, as calf rennet is actually part of an animal and not just an animal product.

afireinside2's picture

To make it a truly vegetarian dish, make sure you use vegetarian parmesan (i.e. without the rennet)

alenaba's picture

My husband and I absolutely loved it!easy to make and tastes delicious. I did managed to get hold of cooked tesco extra special chestnuts so did not have to alter the recipe. I did not mind pasta being slightly oily either as rapseed oil is very good for you ! A winner overall.

jennaseymour's picture

Delicious veggie simple supper

lseastwood's picture

Not unpleasant, but it was disappointed with this recipe and wouldn't make it again - quite a bit of faff and the end result was quite a bland sauce that lacked something, which was surprising as I love all the component ingredients.

steevmak's picture

It is not "Parmesan" per se which is not vegetarian it is specific Parmesan cheeses such as "Parmigiano Reggiano" and "Pecorino Romano". By EU law, to bear these full names, they must contain animal rennet.

Other types of "Parmesan" such as "Twineham Grange", "Sussex Charmer" and "Montello" are all approved by the Vegetarian Society.

In order to stop inexperienced vegetarians from accidentally eating a non-vegetarian product, please correct this recipe to "vegetarian Parmesan".

Anyone other commenter who is concerned, please write an email to the BBC GoodFood explaining the error.

grace07's picture

I really struggled to find some roasted chestnuts so instead I used: Pickled Walnuts in malt vinegar as a subsititute and it was amazing, I will definitley be making it again with the pickled walnuts. I didn't have a problem with dryness - it was a birlliant recipe

chanonica's picture

I don't understand why the parmesan is listed in this receipe... two previous posters have already highlighted why it is not suitable here.

Please remove the ingredient from the list.

peejay16's picture

I also couldn't get any chestnuts so made the pesto with pine nuts instead and added a few walnut halves when stirring in the pesto and mushrooms to give a bit of crunch.

davinagreenbynature's picture

I would like to report a problem with this recipe.
It's a little understood fact that Permesan is emphatically NOT a vegetarian product! The same applies to Pesto, due to the cheese used. Parmesan is made with animal rennet, as is Percerion cheese in Pesto.
I think it would be best if all your vegetarian recipes are reviewed given this serious issue.

dannybh's picture

I don't know if I did something wrong, but I just did not like the recipe, very dry and just...not my thing. I added some mushroom sauce though which made it a bit better, will not make it again though.

christinacanning's picture

This is an absolute favourite of mine - the sweetness of the chestnuts works so well with the fresh herbs. For added dimension I include some lemon zest and juice at the end - delicious!

sallysparrow's picture

one of my all time favourite veggie recipes - so quick and easy and sooo tasty

steffieb's picture

Parmesan in most shops is not vegetarian.... they use rennet to make it. (from a calf stomach)
But there is a veggie alternative available in some organic shops like Montello organic/veggie Parmesan.

mdcbc2's picture

We couldn't find chestnuts of any kind in the shop, so we used a mix of dry nuts instead, and still worked really nicely with the herbal pesto. A bit too oily, but we still enjoyed it.

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