Basil Pesto Pasta with Lentil Sausage

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Since we all seem to be craving a little more quarantine comfort food these days, Amy Webster, Vegan Chef from the Humane Society of the United States, joined us from her home in Seattle to share the perfect recipe.

Fresh Basil Pesto

By Amy Webster

Servings: 4-6


  • 2 cups packed fresh basil; large stems removed
  • 1 cup raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds) *
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups fresh greens like kale (de-stemmed) or spinach
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp salt


1. Add all ingredients to a high-speed blender and start blending on low until well incorporated then increase speed to high.

2. Once your pesto is smooth, taste and adjust for flavor, adding more salt or lemon juice as desired.

3. Pour over your favorite pasta or spread on sliced bread for a zesty Bruschetta.

Optional tip

This recipe is oil-free but you can add 2-3 Tbsp of olive oil to the blend if desired. Alternatively, drizzle a little olive oil over your finished pesto pasta dish.

*Raw cashews can be used instead of pepitas. If using cashews, they need to be soaked for 6-8 hours or boiled for 15 minutes ahead of time.

To watch Amy's Savory Lentil Sausage segment on AM Northwest click here. The recipe is below:

Savory Lentil Sausage

  • 1 cup cooked lentils, mashed
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons granulated garlic (or 2 cloves fresh garlic, finely grated)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seed, crushed or ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon all-spice
  • 1 1/4 cups vital wheat gluten

Prepare the steaming apparatus and bring water to a full boil. Place 4 square sheets of foil out, ready to go.

In a large bowl, combine the lentils, broth, olive oil, soy sauce, nutritional yeast, and all spices and mix. Add the vital wheat gluten and combine well (may need to use your hands).

Divide the dough into 4 even parts. Place one part of dough into tin foil and mold into about a 4 inch log. Wrap dough in tin foil and repeat to make 4 logs. Place wrapped sausages in steamer and steam for 40 minutes. Enjoy immediately or refrigerate until ready to use.