lemony spinach and goats cheese linguini

lemony spinach and goats cheese linguini

Sometimes I wonder if I over-use certain ingredients on this blog. Like goats cheese. Drizzle and Dip is practically a shrine to the stuff, its hard to believe that about 10 years ago I couldn’t bear it.

Food is like love for me, when I fall in it, I often fall quite hard and get a bit carried away.

Goats cheese is one of those things that I am head over heels in love with and any excuse I can find to use it I do. Like here:

If you read my stuff, you will also know I hate waste, and as a professional food stylist I often have a lot of leftover food from shoots which I always try to incorporate into a recipe here.

The lovely goat’s cheese in this recipe was from one of those shoots. It was imported from France and I had it in my freezer for ages so it needed to be used. By the way, in case you didn’t know, you can freeze cheese. It doesn’t always thaw back to its original texture (as in the case with harder cheese like Cheddar), but the taste is fine and I find it perfect to cook with it.

This is a fabulous one pot dish that can be whipped up in 20 minutes. You prepare all the greens while the pasta is on the go, and you use the same pot that the pasta was cooked in to make the sauce. I like to use wholewheat pasta as I have come to prefer its firmer texture and slightly nutty taste. Knowing that it’s also marginally better for me, also makes me happy.

Recipe | serves 2

  • 200 g wholewheat linguini
  • 200g baby leaf spinach
  • 1 cup of flat-leaf parsley
  • zest of a lemon
  • 1 – 2 T of lemon juice
  • 125g goats cheese/chevin
  • 1 free-range egg lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • a handful of toasted walnuts

Bring a large pot of salty water to a boil and add your linguini.

While this is cooking, put your spinach in a bowl, roughly chop the parsley and add the grated lemon zest to the greens.

When the pasta is cooked, drain, reserving about 1 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid. This forms the base of the sauce.

Put the pot back on the heat with 1 cup of the pasta water and add the goat’s cheese. Using a whisk break this up and incorporate it in the water.

Add the greens and the lemon juice to the liquid and toss around. The spinach will immediately start to wilt. Add the pasta to the pot and stir everything together.

Add the egg to the pasta with the Parmesan cheese which will thicken the sauce. Check the seasoning and add salt if necessary (although you probably won’t need to as the saltwater and goat’s cheese will contribute enough). It needs a few grinds of black pepper. Sprinkle over the toasted walnuts.

Serve straight away with a chilled Chardonnay or a crisp Sauvignon blanc.

lemony spinach and goats cheese linguini

I look forward to connecting with you again in the future.

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  1. this sounds and looks wonderful, i am always looking for different ways in which to serve pasta to my sons–i personally do like pasta, but the boys enjoy it and that is their staple meal for Saturday lunch giving them a carbo load for their ride on Sundays

  2. Usha, I do so love using lemon in risotto and pasta. Glad I could help out with a vegetarian option for you.

  3. I am going to make this for dinner this week, then try to photograph it. I also love goat cheese….

  4. People normally either love goats cheese or hate it! I never used to like it but now I am in love with it! Thanks for all the wonderful recipes, Sam!

  5. WOW – this looks absolutely amazing! and there is no such thing as over-using goat cheese.

  6. Thanks Zirkie, when you turn the corner, its amazing 🙂

  7. Thanks Lisa, its very bright and fresh. I love how lemon really livens a pasta or risotto up. Im addicted.

  8. I’m a big fan of goat cheese and I absolutely love how you added walnuts to this recipe. I love mixing in nuts with pasta. Somehow it brings out great flavors and adds great crunch!

  9. Liz Thomas says:

    That corner between hating it and loving it must be a very tight one as I just cannot seem to get around it. I just cannot for the life of me understand why anything that tastes so obviously of goat S#*t can be deemed as delicious! My husband bought some goat cheese with honey in Thailand recently which was billed as “mild” — he loved it, I thought it was vile.

    That said, all your recipes sound lovely and I am sure would work quite as well with other softish cheeses, like St. Marcellain (sp?) which I absolutely love.

    I’m enjoying your blog, many thanks!

  10. This sounds like a delicious combination of flavours and no, I didn’t know you could freeze cheese. Mind you, it never stays around long enough to need to be frozen.

  11. Hi Liz, this comment made me smile. My sister (who is also a Liz) – hates goats cheese. I am not quite sure what happened to turn me around, think I tasted a mild one in a dish, with something sweet and this was the gateway to acceptance. Other cheese would work wonderfully too.

  12. Whole wheat pasta is often mistaken for being the yuk pasta but I really love it against strong flavours. You have really brought out the best ingredients to match the robustness of the pasta. Could rocket be subbed for spinach? (Spinach levels are low here *sigh*) Also I love how goat cheese does not melt in pasta, well not fully anyway. Great textures.

  13. Like Liz, I’m not a fan of goat cheese. Maybe one day I’ll turn the corner! I used to think I hated ALL cheese (so sad, right?) but it turns out I love a good majority of cheeses once I started trying them. Do you think brie would be a good substitute for your goat cheese recipes? Thanks!

  14. HI Jen, Brie will work wonderfully and is probably the next best cheese for it 🙂

  15. I really need to start reading recipes all the way through before cooking…picture looked good, but the flavor was lacking.

  16. Thanks for the message Marlow, but flavour can to be adjusted as you go and to your own taste. A little more lemon, goats cheese etc. This is hte way I cook and I certainly encourage others to do the same.

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