Green Pasta Salad under PHP200: A Healthy Baon That’s Good Even When Eaten Cold

September 17, 2019

Under PHP200 is a series that features recipes of full meals totaling to less than PHP200 per person.

We all know that healthier diets lead to healthier bodies. But a lifestyle of balanced meals isn’t always accessible—especially when a salad costs three times more than a fast food meal. That said, it’s not impossible to eat good food. On this week’s Under PHP200, we prove that by showing you how to make a Green Pasta Salad, a dish that presents the trifecta of being 1) healthy, 2) hearty, and 3) on-budget.

Is this salad an impasta?

Sure, on paper, it looks like your average pesto pasta. But the addition of snap peas and chickpeas add a little bit more depth to it. Plus, the use of kesong puti gives it some freshness, as well as a subtle saltiness. (And we actually really love it as an alternative to your typical parm.) What’s really great about this dish, though, is that it’s delicious hot or cold. So you can choose not to microwave it in the office if you’re too lazy to walk to the cafeteria.

It only costs PHP292.14 for this two-serving recipe. That sets you back only PHP146.07 if you share it with your partner/roommate/colleague.  Though, we recommend saving the other half for yourself; just bring it to work on another day (or eat it for dinner on the same day, whatever).

*Note: The amount does not include salt in the computation, as this is a pantry staple.

Green Pasta Salad

  • Serves: 2 people
  • Active time: 45 mins
  • Total time: 45 mins
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Special tools: Food processor



  • 1 cup basil
  • 1 cup malunggay leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ¼ cup cashew nuts
  • ¼ cup kesong puti + ¾ cup, crumbled
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • Salt, to taste


  • 250g penne pasta
  • ¾ cup snap peas
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained


  1. Add basil, garlic, nuts, and ¼ cup kesong puti into a food processor.
  2. Pulse until no large chunks remain.
  3. While the motor is running, slowly drizzle in olive oil.
  4. Season with salt.
  5. Cook pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water.
  6. About 1-2 minutes before the pasta finishes cooking, add the peas and chickpeas to the boiling water.
  7. Once pasta is al dente, the peas are just cooked, and the chickpeas are heated through, reserve ½ cup of the pasta water then drain the pasta and vegetables.
  8. Return pasta and vegetables to the pot and add in the pesto.
  9. Toss until coated, adding pasta water as needed to bring the sauce together.
  10. Serve on a platter and top with remaining crumbled kesong puti.​
Jica Simpas Jica Simpas

Jica hopes that by writing about food she'll actually learn how to cook. But for now, she'll happily just eat everything—especially cookies.

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