Nourishing Pasta Primavera

Loaded with a rainbow of veggies, this pasta primavera is a quick-to-make, versatile, customizable meal that we come back to again and again. A few key upgrades make this version a nutritional winner!


  • 12-oz box of red lentil or chick pea rotini (or other short cut of pasta)
  • 0.25 c creamy tahini
  • Juice of a lemon
  • Generous splash of rich, flavorful olive oil
  • Generous salt and pepper
  • 2 large carrots
  • Red bell pepper
  • Orange bell pepper
  • Small wedge of red cabbage
  • Several large leaves of green kale
  • Few sprigs of fresh basil
  • Handful of roasted salted almonds
  • Palmful of sesame seeds


  1. Boil a large pot of water, salt the water liberally, and cook the pasta as directed.
  2. Zest the lemon and set the zest aside, then juice the lemon.
  3. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the tahini and lemon juice. Add the lemon juice slowly, just until you achieve a rich, thick sauce that you can drizzle.
  4. While the pasta cooks, heat a generous splash of olive oil in a large skillet. Slice the carrots and add them to the skillet with salt and pepper. Sauté until barely tender.
  5. While the carrots cook, dice up the bell peppers. Once the carrots are barely tender, add the peppers to the skillet. Sauté for another few minutes.
  6. Cut the red cabbage into thin ribbons and add them to the skillet. Cook for another minute or two, until the cabbage is tender but not wilted.
  7. Remove the ribs from the kale leaves and then cut the leaves into ribbons. When the other veggies are tender, add the kale and turn off the heat.
  8. Add the lemon zest to the cooked veggies and toss it while still hot; this will release the fragrant oils from the lemon peel.
  9. Add the pasta into the skillet of veggies, or transfer everything into a large mixing bowl if it won’t all fit into the skillet. Mix well so that the oil and salt from the veggies coats the pasta. Add additional salt and pepper to taste.
  10. Transfer to a serving dish. Garnish the pasta with a very generous drizzle of the lemon-tahini sauce, torn basil leaves, almonds, and sesame seeds. Serve additional tahini sauce on the side for drizzling on individual portions.