Brown Butter Pistachio Pesto Pasta with Chickpeas

Delicious vegetarian pistachio pesto pasta with chickpeas tossed with warm brown butter.


For the brown butter:

▢ ¼ cup butter

▢ For the pasta:

▢ 10 ounces bucatini or spaghetti (or whatever pasta you have on hand)

▢ ½ cup reserved pasta water


For the pistachio pesto:

▢ ½ cup shelled roasted pistachios

▢ 1 clove garlic

▢ 1 teaspoon lemon zest, from 1 small lemon

▢ ½ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

▢ Lots of freshly ground pepper

▢ 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

▢ ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes


To garnish:

▢ Extra chopped pistachios

▢ Fresh chopped parsley



  1. First, brown your butter: add butter to a large saucepan or skillet and place over medium heat. The butter will begin to crackle, and then eventually foam. Make sure you whisk constantly during this process. After a couple of minutes, the butter will begin to brown and turn a nice golden amber color on the bottom of the saucepan. Continue to whisk and remove from heat as soon as the butter begins to brown and give off a nutty aroma. Immediately remove from heat and set aside.
  2. To make the pistachio pesto: add ½ cup pistachios, garlic, lemon zest, salt and pepper to the bowl of a food processor. Process until pistachios are finely ground.
  1. Next, cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Before you drain the pasta, be sure to set aside ½ cup of reserved pasta water, then drain pasta and return the pasta to the pan with the brown butter, then stir in pistachio pesto and just a little bit of the reserved pasta water into the pasta; toss well to combine.
  2. Next add in chickpeas and red pepper flakes and toss again. Taste the pasta and add more salt and pepper if necessary. Serve with extra chopped pistachios on top and fresh parsley for garnish.

Shop now