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Mushroom Penne with pesto in a bowl.

Simple Mushroom Penne with Walnut Pesto

  • Author: Pinch of Yum
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6, depending on how hungry you are! 1x


Simple Mushroom Penne with Walnut Pesto – made with easy ingredients like Parmesan cheese, whole wheat penne, mushrooms, garlic, and butter. Vegetarian.


Units Scale

For the Pasta

  • 8 ounces penne pasta
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 16 ounces fresh sliced mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup grated or shaved Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, for topping

For the Walnut Pesto

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 1/2 cups packed greens (spinach or basil are great – but keep some basil for a more traditional pesto flavor)
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cook the penne pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Toast the walnuts in a small sauté pan over low heat with no butter or oil – stir and shake the pan until the walnuts are fragrant and toasty (about 5 minutes). In a food processor, combine all the ingredients for the walnut pesto and pulse until mostly smooth.
  3. Heat the butter over medium heat in a wide skillet. Add the mushrooms and saute for 8-10 minutes, until the mushrooms are a deep golden brown. Add the penne pasta to the pan and stir to combine, adding Parmesan, salt, pepper, and fresh parsley or other herbs to taste.
  4. Divide the pasta between 4-6 bowls and top with a generous spoonful of the walnut pesto OR stir the walnut pesto directly into the pasta.


Nutrition is for 6 servings including pesto.

This recipe is high in fat primarily because of the walnuts, butter, and Parmesan cheese. If you’re looking to lighten it up a little bit, I’d start by omitting the Parmesan cheese.

  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Category: Dinner
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: walnut pesto, mushroom penne, penne pasta with walnut pesto