sorry for the radio silence the past 2 weeks. amesy’s school got completely overrun with the stomach virus, and we were all taken out by it. thankfully amesy was spared much of it and was only sick for a day. but frank and i were pretty much out of commission for a good 4-5 days. to be honest, i’m still not back to feeling 100%, apparently being 8 months pregnant and violently ill takes a way bigger toll on your body than i had initially thought. in any event, we’re back and functioning human beings. so yay for that!

there’s no way to really segue from that story to this incredibly delicious, incredibly easy weeknight dish. but here we go! we often lean on some sort of pasta dish for our dinner each week, and usually add a protein to the side to fill it out a bit. and i’ve always been intrigued by the “broken lasagna” or “rustic lasagna” recipes i’ve seen splashed all over pinterest. so i was excited to mix up pasta night, and use a thicker noodle than i typically do. while you could definitely use any pasta you like here, the lasagna noodles definitely took the fun factor up a notch.

noodles and pasta aside, this vegan white pesto is really where all the flavor is at! the original (dairy-based) recipe is from bon appetit, and it sounded so good, i thought i would try a plant-based version. while you could make your own vegan ricotta here, kite hill makes one that has a wonderful flavor and texture (plus, i’m all for one less step in a weeknight dinner recipe). from there, we add a few pantry items, some garlic, chopped fresh thyme, lemon zest to offer the ultimate flavor. but the best part about this dish (aside from it not taking very long to make) is that the lasagna noodles and broccoli rabe are cooked together in one pot, essentially making this meal a 2-pot deal, which can be so key on a busy weeknight.

i hope this recipe makes it into your dinner rotation, and could even be a great side or plant-friendly, and crowd-pleasing meal option if you’re celebrating july 4th next week. i hope you love it as much as my family does ❤️


broken lasagna w/ vegan white pesto & broccoli rabe | gf

| serves 4 as a main or 6 as a side |

white pesto (adapted from bon appetit)

  • 8oz vegan ricotta (i like this one)

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts, finely chopped

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

  • 1 clove garlic, grated over a microplane

  • leaves from 3 sprigs fresh thyme, finely chopped

  • zest from half lemon

  • fine salt & fresh pepper, to taste

  • 1 cup pasta cooking liquid


  • 10oz gluten-free lasagna noodles (i use tinkyada)

  • 2 cups broccoli rabe, woody ends trimmed and roughly chopped

  • salt & fresh pepper

  • toasted pine nuts, for garnish

  • thyme leaves, for garnish


  1. make the pesto. in a large mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, olive oil, pine nuts, nutritional yeast, garlic, thyme, and lemon zest. season with salt and pepper. set aside.

  2. cook the lasagna sheets according to the instructions on the box until al dente. in the last 2 minutes of cooking, add the broccoli rabe and continue cooking. before draining the pasta and broccoli, carefully collect 1 cup of the cooking liquid and set aside. drain the lasagna sheets and broccoli rabe.

  3. moving quickly, whisk in half the pasta cooking water into the white pesto, adding more if needed to get a creamy consistency. taste and adjust any seasonings, if necessary. then, toss in the lasagna sheets and broccoli rabe until everything is evenly covered in the pesto, taste once more and add more salt and pepper, if needed. serve, and garnish with toasted pine nuts and thyme leaves.

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AVOCADO-KALE PESTO PASTA (VEGAN) by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal

i used to love making dinner on a whim. looking inside my refrigerator for something that inspired me to make meal. i wish that were the case these days, sadly it’s not. if i’m honest, sometimes i mourn the simpler days where life wasn’t constantly feeling like a hustle, but i know that things will inevitably shift, and that perhaps i may look back on this period in some nostalgic way. i have a feeling a lot of you can relate. whether that’s because you have a family, a demanding job, or just don’t find cooking all that fun.

this is why this dinner recipe comes in clutch! i’ve made it countless times now, and i love its heartiness, you may be asking: what’s the difference between this pesto pasta versus any other pesto pasta. my resounding answer is: AVOCADO! i don’t know about you, but every time i eat pasta for dinner, i end up grabbing a snack about an hour later. i’ve been adding more healthy fats, protein, and fiber to my meals to help keep my blood sugar in check, and ever since doing so, i’m less likely to be likely to noshing on something i’m not even hungry for.

so let’s talk avocado-pesto. there’s an entire avocado mushed up in this recipe which adds richness, and also a good amount of healthy fat. you may be curious if this is just mushed up avocado flavored with basil, or if it even resembles pesto. in the traditional sense, no, this is not your grandmother’s pesto (but we’re rolling with the times, and building off classics to make new classics - amiright!?). we add a cup each of basil and kale, they’re blended up with toasted pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil. we reserve some pasta water to thin it out a bit, which dilutes it a bit, but not too much that it doesn’t perfectly cover every strand of fettuccine. true love in the form of green pesto pasta sauce! i really hope you get the chance to make this one :)

big love! xo

avocado-kale pesto pasta | v & gf

there are so many ways to go about making pesto. if kale isn’t your thing or don’t have it on hand, add spinach, arugula, or more basil. you could even swap the toasted pine nuts for walnuts. there are a variety of ways you could go about making this pesto - just don’t skip the avo!

print the recipe!

| serves 2-4 |


  • 1 ripe avocado

  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves, packed

  • 1 cup torn kale (from about 3 big leaves), packed

  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • salt & pepper

pesto pasta

  • 1/2 cup avocado-kale pesto

  • 1/4 cup pasta cooking water

  • 1 package gluten-free pasta of choice (i personally love capello’s fettuccine)

  • 1/4 cup baby arugula

  • handful toasted pine nuts


  1. in a food processor fitted with a metal “s'“ blade, combine the avocado, basil, kale, pine nuts, lemon juice, and 2 garlic cloves. cover with the fitted lid, and blend; with the processor on, drizzle in the olive oil until incorporated. stop the machine and scrape down the sides, add salt and pepper to taste and blend again until smooth and creamy. taste and add more salt, pepper, and/or lemon juice if necessary.

  2. cook pasta according to the instructions on the box until al dente (don’t forget to skim 1/4 cup of pasta water from the pot before you drain the pasta). drain the pasta and run it under cool water. while the pasta is draining, whisk together the 1/2 cup of pesto with the 1/4 cup of pasta water in a serving bowl until combined. add the pasta and toss until completely covered in the pesto.

  3. taste and add more salt if necessary, top with arugula, and pine nuts, then serve while hot. (store leftover pesto in a lidded container in the fridge for up to 4 days.)

more pasta recipes:

vegan caesar pasta salad

vegan caesar pasta salad

crusty baked .vegan alfredo w/ caramelized shallots & kale

crusty baked .vegan alfredo w/ caramelized shallots & kale

creamy garlicky pasta w/ charred broccoli & figs

creamy garlicky pasta w/ charred broccoli & figs

Summer Squash Vegan Mac 'N' Cheese w/ Herb Pesto by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal

we're coming off of a pretty hectic week.  frank just returned from a trip upstate (do you californians call northern california upstate?), and i've been trying to keep it together working and taking care of amesy.  admittedly, when time gets tight, and there aren't enough hours in the day, my diet suffers.  no matter how many veggies are in my fridge, preparing myself high-vibe meals always falls short at the end of the day.  i like having options, or go-to's, so that isn't the case all the time.  because if i think about it enough, every day feels a bit chaotic in one way or another.  stocking my fridge or pantry with easy-to-put-together ingredients and halfway prepared meals is just where i'm at in life, and i'm kind of just going with it at the moment.  whether that's buying a pre-made protein and adding a salad to it, buying prepared vegetables and cooking up something on the side, or buying a box of mac 'n' cheese to have on hand.

there aren't many store-bought mac 'n' cheese brands that cater to my gluten-dairy-free diet, while also having good, wholesome ingredients. i'm so grateful to companies like Annie's that have options that appreciate different diets, and lifestyles, and that they're so readily available to all families at stores like Target.  i've been eating their mac 'n' cheese since i was young, and it's nice to come back to an old favorite when they came out with their vegan and gluten free variation.  it's a brand that has always been transparent, and i can trust it to feed my family in the right way.

it usually depends on how i'm feeling, or what the weather is like, but most times i prepare a big salad on the side, or add veggies to the the pasta itself.  this time i blended up some herbs i had leftover in my fridge to make a quick pesto, and sliced a couple of summer squash to sauté with garlic.  alone the mac 'n' cheese is tasty and super delicious, the cream sauce is made with pumpkin and sweet potato mixture that's ready to go when added to your plant-based milk of choice.  it all makes for a quick, fresh, meal that basically feels homemade ;)  

big hugs, all! xoxo

Summer Squash Vegan Mac 'N' Cheese w/ Herb Pesto | gf

| serves 4 as a main, 6 as a side |

herb pesto

  • 1 packed cup mixed herbs (i used a combination of parsley, sage, thyme, and oregano)
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 2-3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper

summer squash mac 'n' cheese


  1. for the pesto.  combine the herbs, oil, garlic, and lemon juice in food processor or blender.  season with salt and pepper, and refrigerate until you are ready to use it, or 1 week.  alternatively, the pesto can be made 1 week before using it. 
  2. for the squash and mac 'n' cheese.  heat a skillet over medium heat.  once it's hot, add the olive oil and garlic, stir and cook for about 45 seconds.  then add the squash and let it cook for about 4 minutes without disturbing it, letting it get a little brown.  turn them over and let the squash cook for another 4 minutes, until lightly browned and tender.  remove the squash from the heat.
  3. make the mac 'n' cheese according to the instructions on the box.
  4. in a large serving bowl toss the mac 'n' cheese together with the summer squash.  dollop the top with pesto blobs, and give it all a stir. serve with more pesto on the side.

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Target & Annie's. The opinions and text are all mine.

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