Fettuccine with Goat Cheese and Walnuts
Yield: 4 servings (easy to make for 1, 2, 3 or more)
Adapted from the 12 Best Foods cookbook, this hearty pasta dish features antioxidant-rich walnuts, which have been touted as anti-inflammatory and helpful in reducing "bad" cholesterol and improving gut health, among other benefits. And who knew that mixing goat cheese with pasta cooking water would create the perfect creamy sauce?


  • ¼ cup chopped walnuts, toasted*
  • 2 ounces fresh goat cheese
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 16 ounces fettuccine pasta
  • 2 teaspoons chopped flat-leaf parsley, or more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons (10g) freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • Reserved pasta water


  1. Place the walnuts in a mixing bowl, add the goat cheese, and season the mixture to taste with salt and pepper.

    Cook the pasta according the package directions. (Be prepared to save some of the cooking water. It’s easy to forget.) Drain, reserving at least ½ cup of the cooking water, and return the pasta to the pot or transfer it to a warmed serving bowl.

    Thin the goat cheese mixture with the reserved cooking water, starting with ¼ cup and adding until it becomes the consistency of heavy cream. Pour the sauce over the pasta and sprinkle with the parsley and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Toss to combine and serve immediately.


*To toast the walnuts: Preheat the oven to 350℉. Spread the walnuts evenly on a baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes, stirring them 2 or 3 times. Set the nuts aside to cool.
Finely chop the nuts by hand or in a mini food processor. The nuts may be toasted in advance, cooled completely, and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.

For a veggie-rich variation, add cauliflower and/or broccoli florets to the pasta during the last 4 minutes of cooking.

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