95 calorie pesto pasta (nutritious, vegan and gluten-free!) + #recipeoftheweek 18 May


I’m full, which is weird! – me

I am trying SO hard to eat well right now, but it’s pretty easy to stray.

Tonight I had a meal that felt really greedy but was actually pretty much as innocent as you can get. This dish uses an amazing pasta that’s available in health food shops and contains only 7.7 calories per 100g. It’s very chewy, which takes some getting used to, but it’s worth it for the lovely feeling of being full without the guilt.

The ‘pesto’ is super easy to make too and uses savoury yeast for flavour and nutrition, liquid aminos for a truly vegan seasoning, while fresh basil, baby spinach and garlic give that classic pesto flavour.

I’m really pleased with the results. If you’re vegan, coeliac, or on the 5:2 diet, this is a perfect dish for those days when you need something filling.

Here’s what to do (feeds one):


  • 60g baby spinach (14 calories)
  • 1 pack of Slim Pasta spaghetti (16 calories)
  • 1/2 tsp olive oil (20 calories)
  • 8 tsp water (0 calories)
  • 1 rounded tbsp Engevita savoury yeast condiment with B12 (40 calories)
  • 1 small handful fresh basil (2 calories)
  • 1 spray of Liquid Aminos vegan soy sauce alternative (1 calorie)
  • 1/2 clove garlic (1 calorie)

(Calories are estimated)


  1. In a large pan over a low heat, put the spinach, basil, oil, and garlic and half the water and cook until totally wilted – add the rest of the water if it goes dry
  2. Tip into a blender, add the liquid aminos and yeast and blitz for a few seconds
  3. Drain and wash the ‘pasta’, then cook over a medium heat for 2-3 minutes
  4. Stir the sauce through and serve

Simple, yummy, filling. Will you try it?

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You share the goods, then I generally go round reading, commenting, Stumbling, Pinning and drooling over everyone’s entries. It’s that simple. So just link up below and let’s share the love.

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  1. says

    I always salivate when I see your recipes on facebook so I thought I would definitely join in with this as I had a recent recipe post! wish I was as good at actually photographing the food! :)

  2. says

    I love pesto, but I think I would miss the parmesan (I know it’s not vegetarian, but maybe there is a vegetarian option) and pine nuts in pesto (again, I know they are not low cal). But then you are slim, and my waist is expanding, lol

  3. says

    The food looks appetising and the recipe looks great. Not sure that a tiny number of calories qualifies food as desirable, though.

    Too few is surely not a good thing, is it?

    I know that in the developed West we are used to a ‘norm’ that is probably not normal, but still – isn’t it OK to forget the calories and put energy instead into eating a sensible amount?

    • Emily says

      Oh most definitely :) this isn’t all I’m eating but lowfat/low calorie options can be really valuable sometimes. Admittedly, there’s a cake recipe going up next week :)

  4. says

    omg I need to find this slim pasta spagetti stuff…I love spagetti & pesto…in fact had it tonight…but the full fat stuff!

    • Emily says

      It’s not a patch on the real stuff but its great for when you’re trying to keep calories low. Verrrrrry chewy though, which was a bit of a shock at first!