Pesto & Kale Pasta with Goat Cheese

Pesto & Kale Pasta

with Goat Cheese

20 MIN
2 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

This quick-cooking pasta gets a one-two punch of irresistible flavor from a dollop of creamy goat cheese for delicious tang and our herbaceous basil pesto, stirred into the warm pasta and garlicky kale just before serving. A touch of crushed red pepper cooked alongside the kale adds a little kick of heat throughout the dish.
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Dietary Information

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Vegetarian
  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    720 Cals (est.)
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fresh
ingredients
Pesto & Kale Pasta with Goat Cheese
Title
  • 10 oz Fresh Cavatelli Pasta (Previously Frozen)
  • 1 bunch Kale
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • ⅓ cup Basil Pesto
  • ¼ cup Grated Romano Cheese
  • 2 Tbsps Spreadable Goat Cheese
  • 2 Tbsps Sliced Roasted Almonds
  • ¼ tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
Prepare the ingredients:
1 Prepare the ingredients:

Fill a medium pot 3/4 of the way up with salted water; cover and heat to boiling on high. Wash and dry the kale. Separate the leaves from the stems; discard the stems, then roughly chop the leaves. Peel and roughly chop 2 cloves of garlic.

Cook the pasta:
2 Cook the pasta:

Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water and cook, stirring occasionally, 11 to 13 minutes, or until al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Reserving 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly.

Cook the kale:
3 Cook the kale:

Meanwhile, in a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the chopped garlic and as much of the red pepper flakes as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until slightly softened. Add the chopped kale; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until slightly wilted. Add 1/4 cup of water (carefully, as the liquid may splatter). Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the kale is wilted and the water has cooked off. Turn off the heat.

Finish & serve your dish:
4 Finish & serve your dish:

To the pan of cooked kale, add the cooked pasta, goat cheese, and half the reserved pasta cooking water. Cook on medium-high, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until combined and the cheese is melted. Turn off the heat. Add the pesto and stir to coat (if necessary, gradually add the remaining cooking water to ensure the pasta is thoroughly coated). Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve the finished pasta garnished with the romano and almonds. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

Prepare the ingredients:
1 Prepare the ingredients:

Fill a medium pot 3/4 of the way up with salted water; cover and heat to boiling on high. Wash and dry the kale. Separate the leaves from the stems; discard the stems, then roughly chop the leaves. Peel and roughly chop 2 cloves of garlic.

2 Cook the pasta:

Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water and cook, stirring occasionally, 11 to 13 minutes, or until al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Reserving 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly.

Cook the pasta:
Cook the kale:
3 Cook the kale:

Meanwhile, in a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the chopped garlic and as much of the red pepper flakes as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until slightly softened. Add the chopped kale; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until slightly wilted. Add 1/4 cup of water (carefully, as the liquid may splatter). Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the kale is wilted and the water has cooked off. Turn off the heat.

4 Finish & serve your dish:

To the pan of cooked kale, add the cooked pasta, goat cheese, and half the reserved pasta cooking water. Cook on medium-high, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until combined and the cheese is melted. Turn off the heat. Add the pesto and stir to coat (if necessary, gradually add the remaining cooking water to ensure the pasta is thoroughly coated). Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve the finished pasta garnished with the romano and almonds. Enjoy!

Finish & serve your dish:
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