Mafaldine Pasta With Potatoes, Green Beans and Pesto

Does this recipe say summer, or what! This is a favorite Italian pasta dish loved by many and Marcella Hazan said no single dish is more delicious in the entire Italian pasta repertory. I certainly can see why and you will too if you make it.

This recipe uses a method of preparing pasta with cubes of potato and pieces of green beans, all cooked together in one pot. After this has cooked and drained, the pesto is added which finishes the dish off beautifully. Make your pesto fresh and do not use bottled pesto – there is a big difference in the quality of this recipe.

I discovered a new pasta called MafaldineMafalde or Reginette (Italian for little queens). It is a type of ribbon-shaped pasta that is flat, about 1/2-inch wide, with the smallest wavy edges on both sides. It reminds me of “baby lasagna”. It was perfect to soak up the pesto sauce.

I have mentioned that I recently moved to a “foodies paradise” where just about any food item is at my fingertips. This Italian market I go to has rows and rows of different kinds of pasta. I had so much fun looking at all the different shapes and wondering what I could make with each. I never dreamed there was so much to choose from! For me, this is part of what makes cooking so exciting  – shopping for ingredients.

Mafaldine Pasta With Potatoes, Green Beans and Pesto

  • 1 lb. pasta such as mafaldine (also called mafalde or Reginette), trenette or you can use linguine
  • your favorite pesto recipe (see below) my recipe makes a lot but what you don’t use place in a ice cube tray and freeze for later use
  • 8 oz. peeled, small potatoes, cut into 3/4 to 1-inch cubes
  • 4 oz. haricots verts green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths on a bias
  • Parmesan, grated for serving

Bring 6 quarts of water to a rolling boil. Add 1-2 tbsp. salt and the potatoes.  Cook for about 5 minutes or until they are starting to soften a bit. Add the green beans and cook another 5 minutes.

Add your choice of pasta and stir. I make my pesto while the pasta is cooking  for about 7-9 minutes. I gradually add some of the pasta water to the pesto to get a thinner sauce.  I like to do this to avoid adding too much oil.

Drain the pasta mixture (save 1 cup of pasta water just in case) and place in a heated bowl if possible. Add the pesto to taste and to coat the ingredients. Serve with additional Parmesan.

Recipe by


  • 4 to 5 cups fresh basil leaves, firmly packed
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated (use the good stuff)
  • 4 large cloves of garlic or to taste, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup pine nuts or walnuts or a combination of the two, toasted  (see comment below)
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 to 3 tbsp. parsley, minced (optional)  because basil often darkens in pesto you can brighten its color by adding a little parsley – If you are interested see Cooking Tidbits – Keeping Pesto Green
  • olive oil (add slowly to get a nice consistency for the recipe you are making) for this recipe I only used about 7 tbsp. of oil and then added hot pasta water to get the thickness I wanted

Combine the first six ingredients; slowly add enough olive oil to get the consistency you want. I often like to add some hot pasta water to it so I don’t use so much oil as I did with this pasta recipe.

I like to toast my pine nuts in a dry skillet until they become fragrant. Combine all of the ingredients except for the oil in a food processor and process until finely chopped.  I have an 11 cup food processor and it is perfect for this recipe.  Drizzle in the olive oil with the machine running.  If you want a thicker pesto, do not add so much oil; thinner pesto add more oil.

Recipe by

I’m sharing this must try end-of-season pasta with Fiesta Friday #188.

Toasted pine nuts and most of the ingredients…

Making the pesto…

Growing basil in containers…

23 thoughts on “Mafaldine Pasta With Potatoes, Green Beans and Pesto

  1. Your basil looks amazing and this dish looks so good! Love the unique shape of this pasta and the potatoes and green beans in there.
    I’m so with you on buying ingredients as a major part of the fun of cooking. Though lately I try to limit it, as too many times I’ve ended up with too many of such interesting ingredients, and many times they end up in the pantry, waiting for rescue… 🙂


    • Thanks – a very tasty recipe. Of course I love pesto and I am busy making a bunch to freeze before a cold snap hits the leaves. I hear you about shopping; I not only bought the Mafaldine pasta but 4 other kinds – I hope to use them and not have to “rescue” them later in my pantry 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The pasta looked like slimmer lasagna pasta! I love the addition of the pesto – must be really delicious! Thanks for sharing at Fiesta Friday party!


  3. Pasta with pesto is an all-time favorite! I must have made it at least half a dozen times this summer, sometimes adding green beans, other times chickpeas and olives, etc., but haven’t tried potatoes! I think I will next time. Your basil looks so beautiful! 😍


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