Make-Ahead Spaghetti With Arugula Jalapeño Pesto and Zucchini Recipe

Make-Ahead Spaghetti With Arugula Jalape\u00f1o Pesto and Zucchini Recipe

[Photograph: Suzanne Lehrer]

Notes: To add and maintain more heat, keep the seeds in the jalapeño. Make sure to drain the pesto well, otherwise you'll end up with some separated oil the next day. You can keep the oil in an airtight container and mix it into vinaigrettes for a subtle kick.

Swipe some of this pesto on shrimp, beef, chicken or tacos. It goes well with just about everything.

About the Author: Suzanne Lehrer is a writer and recipe developer in New York and a recipe editor for Cooking Channel. When not curating her budding hot sauce collection, she puts her French Culinary Institute education to good use in kitchens all around town. Follow her recipes and cooking adventures at and on twitter @the_suzchef.

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  • Yield:Serves 2
  • Active time: 15 minutes
  • Total time:20 minutes


  • Kosher salt
  • 6 ounces dry spaghetti
  • 2 cups packed arugula leaves (about 1 1/2 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped toasted walnuts
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded, stemmed, roughly chopped
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium zucchini, finely julienned


  1. 1.

    Bring pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta to just below al dente according to package instructions. Meanwhile, combine arugula, parmesan, walnuts and jalapeno in blender or food processor. Pulse to chop and combine, then stream in olive oil with motor running. Season to taste with salt. Transfer pesto to a fine mesh strainer and let any excess oil or moisture drain off for 30 seconds. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.

  2. 2.

    Drain pasta and run immediately under very cold water to stop cooking. Toss with zucchini and pesto to combine. Serve cold or refrigerate and serve the next day.