Creamy Tuyo Pesto

Have you ever tasted Tuyo Pasta or at least heard about it? It is a good example of a classy dish that makes use of the humble and well-liked food among the masses – the tuyo. Tuyo is a term used to call small salted dried fish. This is considered as a poor man’s food because of its affordability. Two of the most common methods of cooking this fish are frying or grilling directly in charcoal.

Creamy Tuyo Pesto

Who says that tuyo is just a simple food that you can only eat with rice or champorado? Throughout the years, several dishes involving this beloved fish came into being. Among those dishes, my personal favorite is the Tuyo Pasta.

I did several experiments to hype the Tuyo Pasta; this Creamy Tuyo Pesto recipe is the best – by far. This dish has the flavor and texture of what a good pasta dish should have. Besides being a good pasta dish, I like Creamy Tuyo Pesto because it makes use tuyo: one of my all time favorite food.

Try this Creamy Tuyo Pesto Recipe and let me know what you think.

Creamy Tuyo Pesto
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 3
  • 1/2 lb. spaghetti noodles
  • 4 to 5 pieces cooked tuyo (salted dried fish), flaked
  • 3 to 5 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  1. Heat a cooking pan then pour-in water. Let boil.
  2. Cook the spaghetti noodles according to package instructions. Set aside.
  3. Combine garlic and olive oil in a blender or food processor then blend until finely chopped.
  4. Add salt, ground black pepper, basil leaves, and half of the parmesan cheese then blend until the texture becomes fine. You may add extra olive oil as needed. Set aside.
  5. Heat a cooking pot and pour-in water and heavy whipping cream. Stir.
  6. When the mixture is hot enough, put-in butter and stir until melted.
  7. Add-in the tuyo flakes and pesto then stir.
  8. Put-in the remaining parmesan cheese and stir. Simmer until the texture thickens.
  9. Turn off heat. Top noodles with sauce.
  10. Serve. Share and enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 3


Watch the cooking video:


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  1. this is an interesting recipe. thanks for sharing!

    seeing this picture with the tuyo in the middle of the twirled pasta actually made me smile. (it probably feels proud to have finally been given the spotlight.haha.this fish is so underrated, don’t you think?) 😀

    anyway, i read that you’re from chicago and i noticed that most of the things you cook are Filipino dishes. don’t you find it hard to look for ingredients? when i lived in chicago for a few months earlier this year, the filipino store i usually went to didn’t carry a lot of authentic pinoy ingredients (they sell mostly just ready-to-eat foods). can you recommend a good store in the area? i’d appreciate it a lot. 😀

  2. hi kuya banj :)
    ung salsa ng pesto hindi mo tlga nilagyan ng pine nuts?

  3. this is an interesting recipe. i may try it one day. thanks!

  4. Can I use gourmet tuyo..or tuyo in a bottle?

  5. bebang says:

    hello!!! i love your website! it helps me a lot in my day to day cooking. thanks for featuring pesto recipe. i’ve always wanted to experiment pesto sauce in spaghetti (just to have variation on traditional red sauce). may i ask what can i substitute for tuyo? in as much as we want to fry tuyo or daing, we can’t coz the stinky smell stays in the whole house even we’ve opened all the windows… hope to hear from you soon!!! thanks and more power!

  6. johnson says:

    when i,m going to put the tuyo flake ?

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