7.26.2011

Noodles & Company Pesto Cavatappi (Copycat Recipe)


My husband definitely does NOT love pasta dishes like I do. I have to limit myself to one pasta dish every week at most or else he gets sick of eating pasta. Seriously, who gets sick of eating pasta? And how did I marry such a man?!!! Luckily, he has other redeeming qualities and I can overlook this one tiny flaw.

Imagine my surprise when Kurt asked me to make Pesto Cavatappi like he gets at Noodles & Company! I was stoked for two reasons: 1) Kurt was asking me to make a pasta dish and 2) I got to try a new recipe! I didn't have this recipe handy so I first went to the Noodles & Co. website and saw what was in the dish which looked simple enough. Next I did what any good super sleuth would do, I googled the recipe! I found the recipe at Yahoo Answers where a former Noodles & Co. cook posted his recipe and it looked very simple (yay!). The only issue is that he posted the recipe for a one person serving, I wanted to make a whole bunch of pasta. I ended up guestimating on the quantities and was lucky because it tastes pretty much exactly like it does at Noodles & Co.!! I made a side of shrimp for Kurt to add to his dish and he said it was absolutely perfect....he even went back for thirds!! There is nothing as exciting and fulfilling as trying a new recipe and it working out beautifully! 

Noodles & Company Pesto Cavatappi (Copycat Recipe)

Ingredients:
3/4 box cavatappi noodles (you can use any shapes you like but use a hearty noodle)
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, sliced in half lengthwise
1/2 pint sliced mushrooms
1/3 cup white wine
1/4 cup cream
7 oz. pesto (I used store bought but I bet it would be amazing with homemade)
EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil - hellooo, Amy!)
shredded parmesan cheese

Directions:
1. Cook pasta as directed on packaging.
2. While pasta is cooking, saute the tomatoes and mushrooms in about a tablespoon of EVOO.
3. When the pasta is almost done, add the wine to the tomatoes and mushrooms and reduce for 2 minutes. Then add the cream to the tomatoes and mushrooms and reduce for another 1-2 minutes. Add the pesto and stir well.
4. Drain pasta and add to the pesto mixture. Stir very well and let sit a minute to soak up the pesto.
5. Plate and top with shredded parmesan cheese!

29 comments:

  1. I'm very new to cooking so sorry for the stupid question but what kind of "cream" are you using in this recipe? Heavy whipping cream?

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  2. I am so excited to have found this recipe--it is my favorite Noodles and Company dish. I moved to California a few years ago and the Bay Area is sorely in need of a Noodle and Co.

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    1. Same question what kind of cream... and do you have a pesto recipe without pine nuts??

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    2. It's heavy whipping cream.

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  3. Pretty stoked about this! How many servings does it make? I pinned in on my recipes board on pintrest. brandicriminger[at]yahoo[dot]com if you get around to answering the serving question

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  4. Hi, What kind of white wine do you use? I am sooo lost when it comes to the alcohol department.
    Thanks!

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    1. You can use any white wine, but you probably want something basic like a simple table wine or chardonnay or sauvignon blanc. Use wine that you would like to drink, not the cheapest thing on the shelf but you don't need to spend a lot either. Or there are some grocery stores that carry cooking wine, it's near the vinegar at our store.

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  5. Thanks for the recipe! I used sour cream & pinot grigio. I would say it makes 4-6 servings. My husband & I had seconds, it was so good!

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  6. You want to cook the pasta until its almost done, then actually finish cooking it in the sauté pan so it can absorb the wine and cream. I'm only saying this because I use to work as a sauté cook at noodles and company. It's a lot more flavorful for the noodles.

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    1. Since you worked there could you answer some of my questions?

      1) What did N&C use to deglaze ( what kind of wine or stock)
      2) What brand was the pesto sauce (someone told me they bought pre made tubs)
      3) The Penne Rosa Sauce ingredients ( I really miss it since I moved from the midwest) and if possible the method of incorporation.

      It would be really helpful to have answers to these questions.

      Best

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    2. Noodles and company uses franzia house wine . The pesto sauce is noodles and companys own brand. And the penne rosa is basically a chunky marinara sauce with some red pepper chunks and pepper flakes in it.

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  7. @Kayla Erne - I've tried making this at home a few times (so that it's gluten free) and I've found the pesto makes all the difference. What brand did they use when you worked at N&C?
    Thanks!

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  8. I say it makes about 4 servings but we like big helpings in our house! I use whatever crisp white wine I have in the house, usually Pinot Grigio, Sauvingnon blanc, or a dry German Riesling. For cream I usually use half & half but you can easily use heavy whipping, sour cream, or greek yogurt.

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  9. Made this tonight. It was awesome!

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  10. Glad you liked it TeamDurr & Enrique!!

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  11. Just made this! It's delicious! Thank you!

    Liz
    www.gimmesomestyleblog.com

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  12. Made this for my wife tonight and she raved saying it tasted just like Noodles and Company. She's only gives high praise when it is earned, so kudos to you.

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  13. I'm thinking about making this in my classroom. What could I substitute for the white wine?

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    Replies
    1. Chicken stock would work, it's not the same flavor but it'll add more flavor than water.

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  14. I just moved to New Zealand and they are very lacking in the hearty Italian department. I'm glad I came across this as it's my favorite dish of all :) Thanks for posting!!

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  15. I am a huge fan of noods' pesto cavatappi with shrimp. I tried this recipe last night and i loved it. I added some shrimp to the dish which put it over the top. I made some sauteed garlic shrimp. I added minced garlic to the mushrooms and olive oil. After a few minutes of cooking I added a pound of the shrimp. Seasoned it with old bay seasoning and an italian blend of herbs, and once the shrimp was cooked I followed the remainder of the recipe as listed. this turned out very tasty! In fact it tasted even better the next day. Thanks for posting.

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  16. Oh my gosh, this is amazing. A-ma-zing.

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  17. I'm so glad y'all like the dish so much and I appreciate the kind words!! It's definitely a staple in our house for casual nights or for entertainig!

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  18. JUST made this for dinner and it was EXACTLY like the restaurant's version! We always like shrimp in ours, and I would actually add more mushrooms and tomatoes - a "little" bit heavy on the pasta - but other than that it was perfect!

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  19. for dairy free you can use coconut milk as a substitute for cream. Healthier and delish!!

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  20. Is the wine optional?

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    Replies
    1. If you don't add wine make sure to add some liquid in its place! I'd suggest chicken (or vegetable) broth for flavor.

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