Kale Pesto Recipe

kale pesto

In this kale pesto recipe, the basil typically used  in pesto is replaced  with the earthy kale, which gives the sauce a bolder, slightly spicy flavor. This condiment is delicious mixed with scrambled eggs, spread on a sandwich or pizza, whisked into salad dressing, or spooned over grilled fish.

Kale Pesto Recipe

Makes one cup


Garlic, 2 cloves
Parmesan or pecorino cheese,1⁄2  cup (2oz/60g), grated
Kale leaves,  2 cups  (2 oz/60 g), packed
Pine nuts, 1cup ( 1 1oz/35 g), toasted
Extra-virgin olive oil, 1cup (4 floz/125ml)
Salt, 1teaspoon
 Freshly ground  pepper, 1teaspoon


With a food processor running, drop the garlic cloves through the feed tube. Turn off the processor,  add the cheese and pine nuts, and pulse briefly. Add the kale, turn  on the processor again, and pour  the oil through the feed tube in a thin, steady stream, processing until  a moderately thick paste forms. As you work, stop the processor occasionally  and scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Transfer the pesto to a bowl, stir in the salt and pepper, and then taste the pesto. Add more cheese, salt, and/or pepper if needed to balance  the flavors. Use the pesto right away, or top with a thin layer of oil (to prevent  discoloration), cover, and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Bring the pesto to room temperature and stir well before using.

Reprinted with permission from “Better From Scratch“. Photography by Alice Gao. Copyright 2014 by Weldon Owen Inc. and Williams-Sonoma, Inc.

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