Kale Pesto Pasta revisited… easier and faster!

by ilene on January 13, 2012 · 9 comments

in recipes

I love TJs!!!  Trader Joe’s just my kale pesto pasta recipe a whole lot easier!  I just discovered their pre-cut, pre-washed kale:

I had no idea that they sold kale in a bag!!  It made this kale lover so happy!!! My kale pesto recipe with roasted vegetables is one of my most popular dishes.  You basically make a pesto sauce out of roasted kale instead of using the typical basil.  Not having to cut and wash and dry all the kale makes my recipe so much faster!  All you have to do is open the bag and spread it directly onto a baking sheet, spray with olive oil and roast in the oven.  (Though sometimes if I am not in a rush, I will remove the tough stems of the kale because I find it bitter)

Trader Joe’s is brilliant! I like all their other bagged vegetables, too!  For this dinner, I picked up the pre-cut broccoli and butternut squash to roast and mix into the pasta:

This cut the prep time for making this dish to pretty much ZERO.  I love any time saving shortcuts like this!  And the pasta was just as delicious! YUMM!

See the full  kale pesto pasta recipe here.  Thank you TJs!  Enjoy!

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1 Angela January 13, 2012 at 12:20 pm

Ooo! I will try one day! I tried bagged kale for kale chips (i.e., roasted kale but until crunchy like seaweed) and found the bagged kale never quite got crispy. I wondered whether the leftover stems made the difference (added moisture?).

2 ilene January 15, 2012 at 9:03 am

Hey angela!! I have the same results making kale chips from TJ’s bagged kale. They just won’t get crispy!! Hrmph! But the bagged stuff works well for this recipe since I just throw it in a blender with olive oil and lemon juice and it gets soggy anyways. Having the stems still on makes a big difference in taste too!

– ilene 🙂

3 Anonymous January 14, 2012 at 12:17 am

Awesome! When I made this recipe, I used bagged kale from Trader Joe’s 🙂 The hardest part was peeling and cutting the butternut squash! Will buy it pre-cut next time 🙂

4 Janey January 14, 2012 at 3:36 am

Yes, because you have so little time being a stay-at-home wife that chopping a few vegetables is too much to handle. Think about the extra plastic waste you’re creating!

5 ilene January 15, 2012 at 8:53 am

Hi janey- I wrote this post because I thought others may benefit from this tip, too. The purpose of my site is to share helpful ideas with readers. It’s ok if you don’t like this idea but please don’t judge me. Negative comments are hurtful. Thanks for the reminder to be green. Good thing plastic bags are recyclable! Best, ilene

6 rene January 14, 2012 at 11:20 am

thanks for the awesome time saving tips ilene! your tips are so helpful, i will try this next time! =)

7 EFM January 15, 2012 at 10:05 am

Hi Ilene,

I absolutely love your site and think you are unbelievably talented! First of all- this sounds delicious and I will definitely be making this recipe. I too love the precut bagged kale at TJ’s and use it in my green smoothies sometimes. Secondly- I am sorry to hear such a negative comment on your post. It’s sad to see that some people feel the need to be that way. I feel sorry for them. The funny thing about it is that if you think about it, even if you bought the kale whole most people would use those disposable plastic bags in the produce section. In the end you aren’t producing any more waste (I know there are those reusable produce bags, but most people don’t use them).

Anyhoo- keep up all the wonderful ideas!

8 Mel January 15, 2012 at 5:02 pm

Ilene, that dish looks delicious! The hubby and I love butter nut squash and are going to make it tomorrow night. We’ve been so busy these days, so thanks so much for the quick and easy recipe! It looks like a healthy dish that our whole family will enjoy. 🙂 Yay for kale!

9 Katie Louise January 16, 2012 at 5:16 pm

Oh, this looks delicious. I’ve never made a pasta dish with these sorts of ingredients – I must try!

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