Recipe: Homemade Spinach Pesto

I love food. But after starting a new semester of classes the same day I returned to town from my New Year’s trip, I found myself in an unfortunate situation: I had very little food at home. After eating out pretty much all week, I got tired of constantly spending money, so I decided to make a meal out of my limited grocery supply. I had lots of spinach so I figured I would base the recipe off of that. The result was a homemade version of one of my favorite pasta toppings, which turned out great!

  • 2 Handfuls of Spinach
  • 1 Handful of Kale
  • ½ c of Olive Oil
  • ½ c of Avocado Oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • ½ c of parmesan cheese (preferably freshly grated)
  • Seasonings to taste:
    • Lemon juice
    • Sea salt or Pink Salt
    • Cayenne pepper

Combine all of the ingredients in a blender, adding seasonings as you feel necessary. Put the pesto into an airtight container with a thin layer of olive oil on top, and store for up to 5 days. Can be used on pasta, sandwiches, salads, even rice!

[I used a small personal size blender and it took some maneuvering (turning the blender upside down) to get the spinach leaves to cut]

Pesto is an Italian “sauce” traditionally made by grinding basil, olive oil, parmesan cheese, and pine nuts in a marble mortar and pestle. But there are many variations on the recipe including the one I have created here. I provided no measurements for the seasonings, because I want the recipe to be highly customizable. I love almost all of my foods to have a bit of spice, so I kept adding cayenne pepper until I could taste it. Some may choose to skip the cayenne pepper altogether. This is an easy recipe where most of the flavor comes from the leaves, garlic and oil, so leaving one seasoning out (or adding one in) won’t change much. Let me know if you try this recipe, and how you chose to season it!

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