5 from 17 votes
Overhead shot of Arugula Pesto Pasta tossed with mozzarella pearls and halved cherry tomatoes in a white bowl with a ramekin of grated parmesan cheese, a tan linen and vine-ripe cherry tomatoes arranged around the bowl.
Arugula Pesto Pasta
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins

Bucatini pasta coated in rich, peppery arugula pesto and topped with creamy mozzarella pearls, juicy cherry tomatoes and sweet basil.  This Arugula Pesto Pasta is delicious and light a vegetarian dish that is so easy to make!

Course: entree, Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: arugula, blistered, bucatini, Burrata, Healthy, light, pasta, pesto, tomatoes, vegetarian
Servings: 4
Calories: 817 kcal
  • 9-10 ounces Cocktail Tomatoes (can substitute Cherry or Grape Tomatoes)
  • 12 ounces Bucatini
  • 8 oz Mozzarella Pearls (can substitute burrata, torn into bite sized pieces
  • 1/3 Cup Basil – roughly chopped
  • Sea Salt & Freshly Ground Pepper
Arugula Pesto:
  • 1 Clove Garlic - peeled
  • 1/3 Cup Pine Nuts - plus more for garnish
  • 2 ½ Cups Arugula - packed - plus more for garnish
  • 2/3 Cup Pecorino Romano – grated, plus more for garnish
  • 1 ½ tsp Lemon Juice
  • ½ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  1. Make the Arugula-Pesto: In the bowl of a food processor, combine the garlic and pine nuts. Process until finely chopped. Add the arugula, pecorino and lemon juice.  Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Process until coarsely chopped. 
  2. With the processor running, slowly add in the olive oil in a steady stream. Process until smooth. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper.

  3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in salted water and cook until al dente according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of pasta cooking water and transfer to a large bowl.
  4. Toss pasta:  Add the arugula pesto to bowl with pasta along with 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking water.  Toss to coat, adding more water as necessary to create a silky sauce.

  5. Add the basil to the pasta along with half of the mozzarella and tomatoes.  Toss again until combined.

  6. Serve:  Divide pasta between serving bowls and top with remaining mozzarella and tomatoes.  Garnish with additional arugula, pine nuts and pecorino if desired. Serve.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes
  1. I used bucatini pasta because its thick, spaghetti-like texture holds up great with the pesto, but feel free to use whatever pasta tickles your fancy.
  2. The arugula pesto recipe below will make enough for 1 pound of pasta, which is enough to feed 4-6 people. If you are looking to feed less mouths, simply halve the recipe.
  3. The pesto will keep in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 2 weeks. But, be sure to give it a good stir before using.
  4. The pesto pasta with burrata tastes seriously scrumptious cold the next day, so making enough for leftovers is highly encouraged.
  5. If you want to roast the tomatoes:  Place tomatoes on baking sheet and drizzle with1 tablespoon olive oil. Season with ½ teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Roast in oven for 18-20 minutes, or until tomatoes are very juicy, but not broken down.
Nutrition Facts
Arugula Pesto Pasta
Amount Per Serving
Calories 817 Calories from Fat 432
% Daily Value*
Fat 48g74%
Saturated Fat 12g75%
Cholesterol 45mg15%
Sodium 438mg19%
Potassium 483mg14%
Carbohydrates 69g23%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 26g52%
Vitamin A 1025IU21%
Vitamin C 17.7mg21%
Calcium 405mg41%
Iron 2.8mg16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.