Farm To Fork Sourcing

Kale Pesto Recipe

Posted March 30, 2012

A gorgeous new take on pesto; celebrating the allure of kale!

Kale PestoIngredients:

  • 1/2 pound (approx. 20 leaves) – green kale leaves, de-stemmed (totally remove the main, middle stem)
  • 1 C – cilantro, fresh (can use whole leaves + stems if thin & very fresh)
  • 3 each – garlic cloves, peeled, whole
  • 1 1/2 C – cashews, roasted/salted
  • 1/2 C – parmesan, ground
  • 2 C – extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp – lemon juice


Place all ingredients in Cuisinart and blend until smooth with visible tiny chunks of cashew & kale.

Place kale pesto into a storage container (fitted with a lid) & refrigerate.


  • Stir into/toss with warm pasta to create a sauce.
  • Spread on a tortilla, add lettuce, deli meat and deli cheese; roll up tight & make a chilled wrap.
  • Spread on a tortilla, addgrated cheese & make a quesadilla. Add garden veggies too!
  • Stir into tomato soup (or your fav soup) for extra flavor.
  • Toss with roasted potatoes. Mix into mashed potatoes.
  • Use as a sandwich spread.
  • Put a small dollop on an omelet or scrambled eggs.
  • Mix with cooked white beans & chopped tomatoes for a chilled bean salad.
  • Stir into sautéed veggies.
  • Stir into chicken salad.
  • Mix into ricotta cheese when making lasagna to add flavor to the layers of lasagna.
  • Use a dip for veggies, shrimp, etc.
  • Smear a thin layer on top of a cooked salmon filet.
  • You can freeze the pesto. The easiest way is to spoon the kale pesto into ice cube trays, let it freeze, then pop out the frozen cubes & place them in a zip loc baggie - take out frozen cubes as needed (microwave, thaw in the fridge or simply toss the cube with your hot ingredients to melt).
  • Use 1 1/2 C extra virgin olive oil and 1/2 C flaxseed oil for additional health benefits and flavor. Also experiment with other oils: canola, vegetable or combinations of 2 oils.
  • Cashews are a tasty alternative to pine nuts in this pesto.
  • Basil could be used vs. cilantro.
  • The kale leaves can be very quickly blanched in boiling water (5 seconds) then immersed in an ice bath (10 seconds) & patted dry before placing in the Cuisinart, to create a brighter color and lessen any bitter qualities.
  • Feel free to reduce or add quantities of the listed ingredients to create a thicker or more viscous consistency of kale pesto.

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