Potatoes with Pesto, Peas, and Wild Rice

How could any dish with potatoes and peas not be delicious?

This is my new favorite side dish. First, the centerpiece is potatoes, my desert island food, so no dish could start off better. I’ve used colorful baby potatoes here, but you can use any potato you love, just cut them into bite-sized pieces. 

This is a perfect salad in early summer when new potatoes make their first appearance along with the fresh peas. But since they are only in season for the blink of an eye, thawed frozen peas fill in beautifully most days. Here we are in the middle of winter, and we’ll make do with what we have.

Texture and flavor

The wild rice adds a lot of texture to this dish. It is a grass, and a nutritional powerhouse, having two to three times more protein than regular rice. Loaded with B vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, and fiber, it’s a great addition to this dish. However, you could substitute a traditional rice or even quinoa or farro. You want something on the chewy side here. Then, toss it all together with some pesto, and you’re all set. 

I used pesto from the freezer that I put up last August, but there is some pretty nice fresh basil out there right now, so you can make it from scratch and your house will smell like summer. You can use any other type of pesto here as well.

Let the flavors mingle

Make and serve this warm, or let it cool to room temperature so all the flavors can absorb. It’s easy, and it’s fast to put together. This side tastes like summer, and that’s the second best reason to make it. The first is the flavor! 

Potatoes with Pesto, Peas, and Wild Rice

  • 1 lb. baby potatoes 
  • Olive oil
  • 1 cup thawed green peas
  • 1 cup cooked wild rice
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 to 2 tbsp. pesto

If your wild rice is not cooked, do this first. Follow package directions, rinse it well, and cook with a 1:4 ratio of rice to water, and it takes about 40 to 45 minutes. I like mine on the chewier side.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Slice your potatoes in half, or leave them whole if really small. Brush your baking sheet with olive oil and place potatoes cut side down. Roast for about 20 minutes, or until browned. Place in a large bowl.

While the potatoes are still hot, dollop a heaping tablespoon of the pesto, then toss in the peas, wild rice, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Stir gently and taste. Add more pesto if you like.

Homemade Basil Pesto

Make your own pesto on a cold winter’s day! The aroma of the crushed basil will immediately transport you to the middle of summer.

Recipe here:

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64 Comments Add yours

  1. Carole says:

    Sounds really good. Any ideas how I can make this a vegetarian main dish?

    1. Well, I think it’s almost there! It’s already packed with protein and fiber, so I would probably fill it out with another vegetable such as broccoli or cauliflower florets, or add some slightly wilted Swiss chard or spinach. If you eat eggs, an over-easy on top would be delicious. if not, perhaps such roasted tofu for a different texture. You could also stuff it into a baked portobello mushroom! Have fun with it!

  2. Nancy says:

    Oh what a yummy masterpiece! Comfort from start to finish. And, I’ve got all these ingredients!

    1. Perfect! I hope you like it as much as we do. Easy too!

  3. Suzassippi says:

    It looks beautiful as well as delicious and nutritious. Reminds me a bit of a warm edamame salad I made once!

    1. That sounds wonderful! I hope you still have the recipe.

      1. Suzassippi says:

        I do; I was thinking to look it up and see how similar/different it might be!

  4. What a great combination!

    1. Thank you! It was remarkably simple and so very tasty and satisfying.

  5. Oh my, this looks sooo delicious!!!

    1. Thank you! It was really a surprise how tasty it turned out!

  6. NativeNM says:

    Looks delicious! I love your addition of pesto to the veggies, I’m sure it adds so much flavor!

    1. Thank you. The pesto is so good here, but it always makes me think of summer.

  7. bernadette says:

    Dorothy, this recipe checks all the boxes – vegetarian, healthy, and delicious. Thanks for the share.

    1. You are welcome Bernadette! It is indeed all three, and memorable as well.

  8. Wow sounds amazing!!

    1. Thank you! I was quite pleased with how it turned out.

  9. These are all ingredients I truly enjoy, and it looks delicious too.

    1. Thanks Judy! I’m looking forward to making this again for company.

  10. Oh wow! What a great combination! Are all flavors that I love 😋

    1. Thank you! The flavors blend together quite nicely.

  11. CarolCooks2 says:

    Wild rice is one of my favourites this sounds delicious such lovely flavours 🙂

    1. Thank you Carol, it’s really a nice change!

  12. Simple and fabulous

    1. Thank you. Simple is often the best!

  13. Forestwood says:

    It is so simple yet looks and most likely tastes fantastic. I wonder if I could replace the wild rice with another grain? As I don’t have it in the pantry atm, and supply chain problems are rampant here atm.

    1. You could easily swap out farro or quinoa, even a chewy brown or black rice would be nice!
      Supply chain problems everywhere I guess!

      1. Forestwood says:

        Brown rice or quinoa I can do! Thanks so much.

  14. Gail says:

    Garden peas and baby potatoes. Everything else is pure bonus. 🌿🍃😋

  15. What an unusual combo Dorothy, and it sounds wonderful! The combo of textures is delightful!

    1. Thank you Jenna! This side is all about the textures!

  16. Ally Bean says:

    This is a wonderful looking and sounding dish. I am going to give a try. Thanks.

    1. Great Ally, I hope you enjoy it!

  17. Great combination of flavors in this dish. Love the addition of wild rice! 🙂

    1. Thank you Ronit! The rice was so good here, I just loved the texture!

  18. You are making me so hungry again! Another delicious recipe Dorothy. ❤️

    1. Thanks Diane! We just loved this recipe!

  19. angelamara says:

    You had me at “pesto”. Yum!! I also like that this is quick and easy to put together. Nice technique for roasting the potatoes!

    1. Thank you Angela! I adore roasted potatoes and I use them in lots of dishes!

  20. NancyC says:

    Yum! You are totally right—this has to be delicious since it has potatoes and peas–this is my kind of dish! 🙂

    1. Thank you Nancy! It is definitely a keeper!

  21. This looks great! It would never have occurred to me to mix potatoes and (wild) rice. When I read the title I was confused about the pesto, but then I realised you only use a bit. Will have to try this.

    1. It was one of those stream of consciousness things, and it worked! You are right that the pesto should not be overwhelming here.

  22. terrie gura says:

    I’ll join you on that desert island, Dorothy, because I’m crazy about potatoes, too! I love everything about the textures in your dish, and I could sure use a taste of summer!

    1. We wouldn’t starve if there were potatoes on hand!
      I’m doing everything I can right now to taste summer!

  23. Sowmya says:

    Wonderful recipe with wild rice and potatoes Dorothy

    1. Thank you! Start with great ingredients and you’re all set!

  24. Christy B says:

    Keep up the great recipes, my friend!

    1. Thank you so much Christy! I enjoy sharing them.

  25. This is such a clever clever dish! Aside from the taste factors, which are very inviting in and of themselves, in terms of nutrition peas and rice eaten together make up whole proteins. Clap clap …

    1. Ah! Thank you! Wild rice has more protein than regular rice grains, but sometimes it gets forgotten. And if you happen to have wild rice already cooked, this simple dish is really fast too!

  26. Christie Hawkes says:

    This looks delicious–and not too complicated! I am going to try this recipe for sure. Thank you for sharing it!

    1. Thank you Christie! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

  27. Looks & sounds yummy, Dorothy! 🌞

    1. Thank you so much Lisa! It’s very delicious!

  28. This sounds very nice, Dorothy. I’ve never cooked with wild rice, but I have seen it at the store.

    1. Thank you Robbie! What I love most about wild rice is the great texture it lends to a dish. Give it a try!

  29. CarolCooks2 says:

    Looks delicious Dorothy.. I love wild rice… with the other ingredients its my kind of food 😊

    1. Thank you Carol! I love this combination, so satisfying on all counts!

  30. Paula says:

    I love the sound of this dish, and agree potatoes would have to be one of my desert island foods too. I have never cooked with wild rice before and cannot honestly remember if I have even tried it. I love cooking potatoes that way, with the crisp flats – like eating a chip! A good one to add to my midweek repertoire.

    1. Wild rice keeps floating in and out of my life, it’s one of those ingredients that I love, but if I don’t have it on the pantry shelf, I forget about it!
      Give it a try. Such lovely texture!

  31. mjskit says:

    I love this dish. We eat a lot of wild rice but I’ve never added pesto nor potatoes to it. This I have to try. Thanks for sharing!

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