Add this stovetop mac and peas recipe to your plant-based, oil free dinner repertoire and reap the rewards. Fast, delicious and a hit with all eaters. It’s tasty enough that your picky eaters will be dishing up seconds and sophisticated enough that you’ll be proud to lay it out for guests. Make this easy recipe and I’ll even show you how to make the best 4-ingredient plant-based Parmesan.
Let’s start with the peas and why you should always stock them in your freezer. Unless you pick them directly from your garden, frozen peas are more nutritious. They are usually packed within 2 ½ hours of picking and for this reason, they retain their vitamin C superpower. And let’s face it, they are inexpensive, and they are a mainstay in freezer sections everywhere.
The simple genius behind stovetop macaroni and peas is creating a flavorful pesto with half your peas, the simmering broth, fresh basil and vegan Parmesan.
My strong preference is using my own baked hemp seed Parmesan recipe. If you don’t have a store of it in the fridge, start that first and then move along. It’s a great condiment to have on handy and it keeps for months in the fridge.
You can also use it to make different kinds of pesto that are also great on pasta. The store-bought kind will work here too. Just be sure to read the labels of any your aren’t familiar with and try to avoid as many added ingredients, including oil as you can.
Besides being such a fun name, mac and peas is a cook-friendly dish. Macaroni is quick to cook, the peas take a few minutes to simmer and the pesto is maybe 5 more minutes if your garlic is less than willing to peel.
I believe It’s only fair that sometimes, our effort is unbalanced toward the reward. I know hard work pays off, but it doesn’t always have to be that difficult. Bank that kitchen time for those big holiday meals. Better yet, let’s find some workarounds. It all works out in the end. Sometimes, you’ll spend extra time on more complicated dishes or meals. This just isn’t one of them.
Spoonfuls of comfort, maybe even reminiscent of meals you thought you left behind when you ‘grew up’ (do we ever) and took more responsibility for what you put in your mouth. My motto, my charge, when it comes to cooking, is uncomplicated and uncompromised. Stovetop mac and peas fits both criteria.
If you’re of such a mind, you could even make a few adjustments such as adding mushrooms or possibly small bites of steam broccoli (do those with the peas). Add a spot of nutritional yeast if you want more of a cheesy flavor. It’s all part of the grand and on-going experiment we call cooking.
Some recipes, like those with peas, command my attention. Those things right in front of you, the afterthoughts, the overlooked are often the best. You wouldn’t trade them for something fancier because they are the perfect fit for this perfect moment.
It’s increasingly easy for us allow the brightest and shiniest to block out what’s right in front of us. We should always reach for the stars, but not at the expense of losing what we just need to open our arms (or freezer) to. We can have both. One just might give us the more immediate gratification that gives us the energy to reach even further. Peace.Print
Stovetop mac and peas is a must-have addition to your plant-based, oil free recipe repertoire. 30 minutes or less for a delicious hit with all eaters.
- 3 cups (10 ½ oz./300 gm) dry macaroni
- 3 1.2 cups (500 gm) frozen peas
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
- ½ cup fresh basil, chopped (2 tbsp. for the puree, the rest for garnish)
- ¼ cup (25 gm) vegan Parmesan
- 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
Timing tip: If you are going to make hemp seed Parmesan, get that into the oven first. You’ll need about 20 minutes.
- Start the water for the pasta and cook according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, add 2 cups of vegetable broth to a medium pan and add the peas. Bring the pot to simmer and cook the peas for about 3 minutes until they are thawed and tender.
- Add about ½ the peas into the blender with 1 cup of the simmering broth, the garlic, 2 tablespoons chopped basil, 2 tablespoons vegan Parmesan and ½ teaspoon black pepper to a blender or food processor. Blend the ingredients.
- After you drain the macaroni, add it back to the original pot. Add the pea pesto and the pesto and the rest of the whole peas. Toss everything together.
- Garnish the final dish or individual servings with the rest of the chopped basil and additional Parmesan.
- Nutritional information includes my own hemp seed Parmesan. Your results might vary depending on which Parmesan you use.
- You can dress up this dish further by adding sliced mushrooms or tender broccoli florets. You can also add ¼ - ½ cup sautéed, minced onion or shallot for a different take on the taste.
- Add a few teaspoons of red chili flakes for those eaters who live on the spicy side.
- Add 1 cup sliced cherry tomatoes directly to the pasta 2 minutes before it’s done cooking and add some contracting color and sweetness to this dish. In other words, get creative!
- Category: Main Courses
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: stovetop mac and peas