Gluten Free Matcha Pesto Pasta Recipe

by Carol Kicinski on November 22, 2015

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Matcha has become a super trendy ingredient to use in cooking, and for good reason. Matcha is a green tea that has a unique, complex flavor that is an earthy, vegetal taste followed by just a hint of sweetness. It is very finely ground, sort of like cornstarch.

For me, it was an acquired taste, but once acquired, it has become addictive.

The health benefits of matcha are pretty amazing. It is super high in antioxidants but not just any antioxidants. Matcha is loaded with Catechin, EGCg. Of all the antioxidants, Catechin, EGCg is most widely recognized for its cancer fighting properties.

For over a thousand years, matcha has been used by Zen Buddhist monks to aid relaxation and to help keep them alert while meditating.

Matcha also contains L-Theaninie, an amino acid which produces dopamine and serotonin in the body. The effects of this are enhanced mood, better concentration, and improved memory. Sounds like a great deal to me!

As I said, I’ve become a little addicted to matcha and have been using it in a variety of ways. This matcha pesto pasta is one delicious result. And since matcha pairs really well with tamari, I added a little San-J gluten free tamari to both the pesto and the pasta cooking water. The result? Pretty darn fabulous!


Gluten Free Matcha Pesto Pasta Recipe


1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons San-J Tamari – use divided
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon matcha – use divided
1 pound gluten free spaghetti
1 cup fresh basil leaves, lightly packed
1 cup fresh mint leaves, lightly packed
1 ¼ cups roasted and salted pistachios – use divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 2 lemons (about ½ cup)
1 cup olive oil
1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved


Add 1 tablespoon of Tamari and 1 tablespoon of matcha to a large pot of water and bring to a boil. Add the spaghetti and cook according to package directions. Reserve about 1½ cups of cooking water and drain the pasta.

While the pasta is cooking, make the pesto. Place the basil, mint, 1 cup pistachios, garlic, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons Tamari and 1 teaspoon matcha in a food processor. Process until everything is well chopped. With the machine running, drizzle in the olive oil. Continue processing until it forms a smooth and thick sauce.

Combine the cooked spaghetti with the pesto and tomatoes and toss to combine, adding some of the reserved pasta water, a little at a time, to thin out the pesto.

Place in a serving dish and top with ¼ cup chopped pistachios.

Can be served warm or at room temperature.


Serves 8

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