Take a look at how to sneak more kale into your diet. Avoiding all dips and spreads that are made with seed oils such as canola oil, sunflower oil or just plain generic 'vegetable oil' is so difficult, so have a go at making your own kale pesto using just olive oil.
It's pretty simple and you know exactly what goes into it. And to top it all off, the recipe is nut free.
A classic pesto contains pinenuts (which is actually a seed) and sometimes cashews, but I have omitted them for 2 reasons - 1) they are expensive 2) so many readers are requesting nut free recipes due to allergies or school restricitons.
I love leafy greens as they are packed with nutrition and incredibly low carb. At every meal I try to eat a variety of leafy greens. Kale is incredibly versatile as it can be baked, fried, stir fried, sautéed, steamed or eaten raw. This recipe for kale pesto uses raw kale, olive oil, basil, garlic and parmesan. Now what's not to love about that combo?
Kale is a great vegetable to grow in your garden as it can be relatively expensive to buy in the supermarket, yet tends to grow like wildfire (especially when ignored in my case). So this is a great recipe to use up all that excess kale. I'm sure you could even make this with spinach, you would just need to play around with how much olive oil is required.
TOP TIP :: If kale pesto turns out a little bitter, add 1 or 2 tablespoons of butter. This can take the edge off the kale if you are not used to it. Many spreads and dips contain sugars or sweeteners, so it may take a while to acclimatise your new sugar free taste buds.
TOP TIP :: To make this dairy free, omit the parmesan and butter. Add other herbs to bump up the flavour.
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Kale Pesto Recipe (nut free)
- Put all the ingredients, except the olive oil, in the blender.
- Pulse with the blade until roughly chopped.
- With the blender running, slowly pour in the olive oil until you get the desired thickness.
- Taste the kale pesto and adjust salt, parmesan and possibly add some butter.
- Store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Can be frozen in ice cube trays.
- Nutrition calculated using ¼ c parmesan and 1 c olive oil. Adjust nutrition values according to how much you have added to the final recipe.
- You may require more or less olive oil, depending on how thick you like your pesto.
- Optional - 1 - 2 tablespoon butter if your kale is too bitter. Butter makes it creamy, smooth and removes that bitterness.
COOKBOOKS - MEAL PLANS - PANTRY
Approximate nutrition information is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. For the most accurate nutritional data, use the actual ingredients and brands you used in your preferred nutrition calculator.
So how do you use pesto when you cant have crackers and pasta? Glad you asked. How about stirring a few tablespoons through zoodles for an entirely green meal?
Using slices of cucumber is my number one cracker alternative. Grain free seed crackers and best of all, on the base of a low carb pizza. FatHead pizza is the most downloaded recipe for the entire website. And one final option, how about using cracker crackling for a dipping tool?