This simple Pesto Salmon Pasta Recipe is the perfect dinner for a busy weeknight. This pasta dish is dressed up with garlic chips, red onions, and coconut milk for the ultimate comfort meal. You can replace the pasta with greens for a flavorful light leafy salad.
I love recipes that can easily be converted between carb heavy pasta type dishes and salads. I made this pesto salmon pasta and also made a similar version of this dish but substituting salad greens for the pasta.
Perfect lunch or dinner for D and myself. While he can afford to eat calorie loaded pasta dishes, I prefer a lighter leafy green salad, but with all the added flavors. How perfect that this pesto salmon pasta can be served as a salad without the pasta? Now that’s kitchen brilliance if you ask me : )
One of my favorite parts of this recipe is the garlic chips. Have you made garlic chips before? They are the best. Essentially you heat up some olive oil and pan fry thin slices of garlic until just beginning to brown on both sides. Drain the garlic on paper towels, allowing it to crisp and now you have garlic chips for garnishing the pesto salmon pasta with and garlic infused olive oil for cooking the salmon in.
Let’s talk salmon. Is it the best fish ever or what? Agree or disagree? I love love love salmon and find it to be oh so flavorful and rich. But, if you ask me salmon steak is the way to go. This cut of fish is way fattier than the regular fillet and so much more flavorful. Sure, you will have to deal with a few bones, but it’s well worth it.
Salmon steaks are also so much more forgiving than salmon fillet. Overcook a salmon fillet and it can be super dry. A salmon steak stays moist though.
My favorite way to prepare salmon steaks (the way I always make them in this pesto salmon pasta) is to heat the pan with oil over high heat until almost smoking, then add the seasoned (with salt/pepper, lime juice + gluten free tamari) salmon steaks.
You’ll want to turn on the oven fan on high when cooking like this. That salmon will start to sizzle up and will have a nicer crunchy outer layer from cooking it at high heat. Once browned and crisped on one side, turn over and cook until crisped up on the other side.
While the salmon is cooking prepare the pasta and then move on to the sauce.
The sauce here is incredibly simple but still full of flavors and made from scratch. Once you drain the pasta water, add the pot back to the stove over low heat and throw in some coconut milk and pesto (preferable home made and best if using my vegan basil hemp seed pesto). Toss that together a few times, and let the heat slightly thicken the sauce and coat the pasta noodles.
No need to buy those jarred preservative and additive filled sauces, and also no need to slave away in the kitchen preparing your own tomato sauce.
To assemble the pesto salmon pasta serve the creamy pasta noodles topped with cut up salmon steaks, garnished with garlic chips, thinly sliced red onions, capers and green onions.
Perfect pasta sauce for the busy home cook.
Looking for more 30 minute weeknight pasta recipes? Check out these:
- Dairy Free Chicken Pasta with Creamy Pesto Sauce –> PIN for Later
- Creamy Vegan Pumpkin Pasta with Sage –> PIN For later
- Vegan Roasted Red Pepper Sauce Pasta –> PIN For Later
- 30 Minute Ham and Tomato Pasta
- 30 Minute Lightened Up Creamy Coconut Milk Carbonara Pasta
- Creamy Tomato Chicken Pasta
- 10 Minute Alfredo Vegan Pesto Pasta → PIN For later
A delicious pasta dish full of rich flavors. A perfect dinner dish with salmon, pesto and spices and herbs. Full meal!
15 minPrep Time
20 minCook Time
35 minTotal Time
- 1 salmon steak
- 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- salt/pepper to taste
- splash of gluten free tamari
- splash of lime juice
- 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 teaspoons capers
- 6 tablespoons pesto (use vegan pesto for dairy free version)
- 1/4 cup coconut milk
- 6 ounces gluten free pasta (linguine, tagliatelle, etc)
- 2 green onions, diced
- Add a dash of tamari, salt and a little bit of lime juice onto both sides of the salmon steak.
- Heat oil over medium heat and add thinly sliced garlic. Cook until it starts to brown and then remove the garlic. Increase heat to medium-high and add the salmon steak, once the oil is hot, cooking it on both sides until browned.
- Boil pasta according to package directions and drain the pasta water. To the pot of pasta add pesto and coconut milk and return to the stove over medium-low heat for 1-2 minutes more, stirring the pasta with the sauce.
- When salmon steak is cooked through, cut it up into large bite sized pieces (removing the bones).
- Top pasta with salmon, capers, red onions, crispy fried garlic, and green onions. Toss. Add a splash of lime juice for an extra kick.