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Barilla Whole-Grain Penne with Arugula Pesto

Staff Writer

Pesto is one of those amazing condiments in cooking because of the diverse amount of ingredients you can use to make it. Chef Lorenzo Boni of Barilla uses arugula instead of basil in this recipe to give the pesto a sharp bite. A subtle marinara sauce paired with the pesto and whole-grain pasta make these recipe flavorful and good for you, too. 

Deliver Ingredients


  • 1 Pound whole-grain penne, preferably Barilla
  • Half a 26-ounce jar of marinara sauce, preferably Barilla
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 Cup almonds
  • 1/4 Cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated, plus more for serving
  • 3 Cups arugula
  • 1/2 Cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste


Cook the pasta according to package instructions in a large pot of boiling, salted water. In a small skillet, heat the marinara sauce. Meanwhile, in a blender, add the garlic, almonds, grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, and arugula; pulse for 10 seconds. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Pour the pesto into a large bowl. Drain the pasta, reserving ½ cup of the cooking liquid.

Add the cooking liquid to the pesto. Add the pasta and stir to combine. To serve, place a small amount of the hot sauce at the bottom of a bowl, top with a scoop of pasta, and garnish with shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.


Penne Shopping Tip

Italian food is about simplicity and letting the ingredients shine. So make sure you get ingredients that are great quality and flavor. Farmers markets and specialty stores will have great produce and products. Just be sure to have some great olive oil.

Penne Cooking Tip

Unlike other highly regarded cuisines, Italian cooking is usually simple to make with many dishes having only 4 to 8 ingredients. Italian cooks rely chiefly on the quality of the ingredients rather than on elaborate preparation.