Vegan Kale and Basil Pesto Recipe

Homemade Kale Pesto
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  • 10 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 4-5 cups (16-20 servings)
Ratings (5)

Sneak a bit of healthy green kale into your pesto by using a half basil and half kale mix. You'll likely not even notice the difference. There are very few wrong ways to make pesto, so adjust the ingredients to your liking, and make your kale pesto as chunky or as smooth as you like.

What You'll Need

  • 1 cup kale (if you have leftover steamed kale, you can also use that, but fresh is better)
  • 1 cup basil leaves (fresh)
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoon nutritional yeast (or vegan Parmesan cheese substitute)
  • 2/3 cup nuts (pine nuts are traditional, but walnut and cashew nuts are nice for variety)
  • 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice (fresh is always best)
  • Sea salt and fresh black pepper to taste

How to Make It

  1. In a blender or food processor, combine the kale, basil, garlic, nutritional yeast, and nuts, pulsing just until coarsely chopped.
  2. Slowly add olive oil, lemon juice and plenty of salt and pepper, blending just until desired consistency is reached.
  3. For a thinner, saucier pesto, add more olive oil or other liquid.

Not sure what to do with your kale pesto, now that you've got it? Try using it to make pesto and breadcrumb stuffed tomatoes, or check out these four ways to use pesto.


    Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
    Calories 79
    Total Fat 6 g
    Saturated Fat 1 g
    Unsaturated Fat 3 g
    Cholesterol 0 mg
    Sodium 21 mg
    Carbohydrates 6 g
    Dietary Fiber 2 g
    Protein 2 g
    (The nutrition information on our recipes is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. Individual results may vary.)