Roasted Butternut Linguine with Pesto Breadcrumbs

roasted butternut linguine pesto breadcrumbs

In our house, pasta is on the menu at least once a week. During lockdown it was actually on the menu four times a week, but we are working on changing that because summer bodies are not made of pasta. Stupid world.

Anyway, this pasta recipe has a 'voilà!' ingredient. And I say that with all the flourish of a French waiter in central Paree, serving escargot to the ignorant English-speaking peasants who dare to venture into his establishment. It gives the dish a certain 'je ne sais quoi'. I will now stop speaking in French because my spell check is overworked.

Behold, the Francophile-worthy (but not at all French) addition of pesto breadcrumbs. Make them tasty and bake them on top of your pasta dish for a dose of theatre with your dinner. Here's your handbook...

Roasted Butternut Linguine with Pesto Breadcrumbs


  • 400g linguine
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped (shallots can be hard to find so I sometimes use pickling onions if necessary) 
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp chill flakes
  • 2 cups tenderstem broccoli
  • 1 cup butternut, cubed and pre-roasted until soft and caramelised
  • 2 tbsp capers
  • 2 tbsp basil pesto (Irene's makes a delicious vegan one)
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut cream
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup grated vegan cheese (you can omit this but I wouldn't recommend it!)
  • 2 handfuls baby spinach
  • Zest & juice of 1 lemon
  • Olive oil for cooking
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 3 slices stale bread


1. Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees. Add the bread to a food processor or nutribullet with the vegan pesto and pulse until it turns into breadcrumbs. If you don't have either of those, you can crumble it by hand!

2. Cook the linguine according to the packet instructions. 

3. Sauté the onion in olive oil over medium heat until translucent. Add garlic, chilli and capers and cook for a further 1-2 mins. Add cooked butternut and raw broccoli and cook for 3-4 mins. 

4. Stir in the vegan pesto until well combined. Deglaze pan with white wine, scraping all good stuff off the bottom for flavour. Add coconut cream, vegan cheese, spinach, lemon & seasoning. 

5. Turn off the heat and stir the cooked pasta into the sauce. If your pan isn't oven proof, transfer the mixture into a baking dish. 

6. Sprinkle over the pesto breadcrumbs so that the entire dish is generously topped with them and place the pasta into the oven to bake for 10 minutes.

7. Serve straight from the pan on the table.

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