How Much Pesto Per Pound of Pasta?

How Much Pesto Per Pound of Pasta
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Not only do they sound similar, but pesto and pasta go hand in hand in creating delicious, heavenly dishes. Making pesto and pasta is far from rocket science, but getting the ratios right may be tricky, mainly because it often seems like there is no such thing as too much pesto. Since there is, in fact, such a thing as too much pesto, you need to know where to stop so as not to ruin your dish. So how much pesto per pound of pasta?

The general rule of thumb says that half a cup of pesto is enough for a pound of pasta. However, often pesto isn’t the only thing added to pasta. So depending on the other ingredients in the pasta, the pesto amount should be even lower if the pasta contains other strong-flavored ingredients. 

Pesto is basil-based and has an intense flavor; it also contains garlic and nuts, so it is pretty caloric too. More often than not, it seems like you are adding too little pesto since it doesn’t appear like other sauces, but you see only small green basil pieces. To help you get the dose right and enjoy your pasta to the fullest, in the following paragraphs, I will describe how much pesto you should add to your pasta in various circumstances. 

What Is the Ratio of Pesto to Pasta?

The standard amount of pesto for pasta is about a quarter of the weight of the pasta. So, per one pound of pasta, which is 453 grams, you should use half a cup of pesto, which is about 120 grams, i.e., 4.2 ounces. 

Pounds10.27 (1/2 cup)

However, if pesto isn’t the only thing you add to your pasta, and you add cream or sour cream or combine the pesto with a red sauce, such as marinara, etc., you need to further reduce the pesto amount. 

So, from half a cup of pesto, i.e., 120 gr./4.2 oz, you should add a quarter of a cup of pesto, which is 2 oz, or 60 gr, per one pound of pasta. Because of the additional flavors, especially the red sauce, you may intensify the pesto flavor; adding the standard amount may make your pasta too intense. 

Moreover, not all flavors go with pesto, which is the case with cream-based sauces. It isn’t that a cream-based ace goes horribly with pesto, far from it, but they don’t mash as well as you might think. So it is always safer to reduce the pesto amount if you combine it with a cream-based sauce. 

You can always add more pesto if the dish could use some, but taking it out if you feel you’ve gone too far is impossible. Therefore it is best to play it safe and reduce the pesto amount when adding other ingredients to further enrich the pasta. 


What Does Pesto Taste Like? What Does Pesto Go With?

How Much Pesto for 100 g Pasta? 

The math here is very easy; 100 gr of pasta is slightly less than a quarter of a pound. So, the amount of pesto per 100 gr. pasta is about 26 gr, which is eight of a cup or a little less than two tablespoons. 

If you add another sauce to the pasta, in addition to the pesto, reduce the pesto amount accordingly. I recommend you use about one tablespoon of pesto for cream-based sauces and half a spoon for tomato-based sauces. 

How Much Pesto for 16 oz of pasta? 

16 oz. of pasta is a pound of pasta. The standard rule applies here, i.e., half of a cup of pesto. Half of a cup of pesto in grams is about 120, and in ounces, it is about 4.2. Depending on whether you add other ingredients to the pasta, such as other sauces, reduce the amount of pesto accordingly. 

How Much Pesto for 12 oz Pasta? 

Twelve ounces of pasta is about 340 grams, about three-quarters of a pound, 453 grams. So, considering that 120 gr, i.e., 4.2 oz of pesto, is the recommended amount for a pound of pasta, you should reduce the pesto amount by one-quarter. 

This means you should add about 80 gr. of pesto, i.e., 2.8 oz. to 12 oz of pasta. Again, this calculation applies only when pesto is the only sauce you use for pasta. If you use other ingredients, reduce the pesto amount.

How to Use Pesto for Pasta? 

Other than yielding delicious results, one more reason pesto and pasta are somewhat of a celebrity among the pasta and sauce combinations is because of the simplicity of making. 

Pesto includes throwing garlic, oil, pine nuts, salt, and basil into a blender and mixing everything until you get a bright green-colored creamy consistency. This takes under two minutes to make. 

How Much Pesto Per Pound of Pasta

Add the pesto to your pasta and mix well until the pesto is equally distributed throughout the pasta. Lastly, grate parmesan cheese on top of the pasta, or skip the cheese if you want to have a vegan meal. 

What to Add to Pesto Pasta?

You can enrich your pesto pasta with cheese, cherry tomatoes, olives, bacon, ground meat, and nuts to green peas, canned corn, or roasted broccoli. 

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