Recipe: Pesto Salmon Spinach Pasta
Are you tired of your traditional pasta dish? This rotini recipe highlights the vibrant flavors of basil pesto and nutrient-packed salmon!
You’ve probably heard before that salmon is fabulous for heart health. This oily fish contains the types of fat our bodies require: omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are vital for cardiovascular and brain health and can also help reduce inflammation throughout the body. Salmon is also an excellent source of protein, selenium (which is necessary for thyroid health), and B12 (a B vitamin often missing from vegetarian diets).
It’s recommended Americans eat 2 servings of fatty fish per week, but most of us don’t meet this goal. Different types of salmon (depending on location and farm vs. wild) may also contain varying amounts of mercury, so it’s recommended you eat no more than 4 servings of fatty fish per week. Pregnant women are recommended to eat no more than 2 servings of fish per week and to avoid all high mercury-content fish (such as swordfish and king mackerel).
Pesto Salmon Spinach Pasta
- 2 lbs wild-caught salmon fillets
- 16 oz rotini pasta
- 3 C fresh spinach
- 6 oz jar basil pesto sauce
- Parmesan cheese, grated (Optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Place salmon fillets on baking sheet, skin side down.
- Once oven is preheated, insert salmon. Cook 20 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 145°F.
- Meanwhile, prepare pasta according to package instructions.
- Drain pasta water, rinse, and return pasta to pot.
- Add spinach to pasta. Cover pot 6-8 minutes, stirring halfway, until spinach mostly wilts.
- Add pesto to pasta. Stir to combine.
- Use fork to flake baked salmon and skin into bite-size portions. Discard salmon skin, if preferred.
- Add salmon to pasta. Stir to combine.
- Divide into serving bowls. Serve warm, topped with Parmesan cheese if desired.
- For the salmon: chicken, trout, cod, mahi-mahi, or shrimp (adjust cooking times accordingly)
- For the spinach: baby kale leaves or chopped mushrooms
- For the basil pesto: sun-dried tomato pesto