Radish Green Pesto Pasta

radish pesto pasta served on a dark gray plate.

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5 from 3 reviews

This Radish Green Pesto Pasta recipe features pasta tossed with radish top pesto and roasted radishes. A great way to use the whole radish plant!



For the radish green pesto

  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 4 cups radish greens, well rinsed (a bit less is OK – see notes)
  • 1 cup basil
  • 3/4 extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (optional)
  • 2 tbsp toasted pumpkin seeds (optional)

Other ingredients

  • 6 radishes, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pound short pasta shape, such as ziti


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Toss the radish pieces in a baking dish with the olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Roast the radishes in the oven. After 20 minutes, take the radishes out, stir and return to the oven for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the radishes are soft and pierce easily with a fork. Set the radishes aside.
  3. Make the pesto as the radishes roast. Add the garlic cloves to a food processor, pulse to mince the garlic. Add the radish greens, pulse again to chop up the radish greens. Pour in the olive oil with the blade running. Now the pesto should be getting a good sauce like consistency. Open the food processor, stir, and then add the cheese and pumpkins seeds. Pulse to combine, and the pesto is ready to serve.
  4. Cook the pasta according to package instructions, toward the end of the radish roasting time. When cooked to your liking, drain the pasta and toss immediately with a couple scoops of the pesto. Stir in the roasted radishes.
  5. Plate the pasta, and pass additional radish pesto at the table along with some extra cheese. Enjoy!


  • You might consider adding a tablespoon of fresh lemon juice to the recipe to balance the bitterness of the greens. I did so the 2nd time I made this recipe, and it did add a nice brightness to the dish.
  • The 2nd time I made the recipe the radish tops I had yielded only 3 cups. The pesto was still flavorful, a bit more mild. So I would say anywhere from 3 to 4 cups of the greens is fine.
  • I like to use pumpkin seeds for a nut free pesto. You could omit them, or try pine nuts or sunflower seeds if you like.
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