Creamy Pesto with Walnuts and Spinach

Creamy walnut and basil pesto. Recipe and photo by That Healthy Kitchen

I would like to introduce you all to the most AMAZING vegan pesto ever¬†ūüíö

I swear, this pesto is way¬†better than all the “normal”, non-vegan, processed pesto’s I’ve ever had, and¬†it is might very well be the easiest recipe on my blog… Although this two ingredient raspberry jam¬†is also super quick and easy.

Creamy Pesto with Walnuts and Spinach

This is actually not my first attempt at making pesto, but it never turned out really good, and at a certain point I just gave up. The basil would never really combine with the nuts I was using and it always ended up being more like a salsa than a real, spreadable pesto.

All that horror though, that was all before I had a Vitamix blender. I have to say it guys, and I’ll probably say it again, I love love love my Vitamix! It is so amazing for making anything ranging from smoothies, soups, pasta sauces, hummus, banana icecream, nut butters and batters for things like muffins, brownies, falafels, veggie burgers, etc etc. I could go on and on about the amazingness of this machine, but I can imagine¬†you would all get a little bored – the list would be looong!

However, when I got a Vitamix¬†for Christmas last year, I made a little list of everything that I wanted to make. And, until a little while ago, pesto was one of the few things I hadn’t crossed off yet. Other things that are still on my list include nut milk, raw apple sauce, and ketchup, so stay tuned for those recipes!

Creamy Pesto with Walnuts and Spinach

So when I saw some beautiful basil and spinach at our local market, I took my chance and decided to finally make some pesto! What makes this pesto so special and delicious is that it is incredibly creamy and smooth, which is al due to this amazingness that is called freshly roasted walnuts.

Raw walnuts are already amazing, but if you roast them, their oils are released and the pesto in turn will get this amazing, spreadable but still thick and creamy consistency. It really is amazing guys! Ever since I made this pesto for the first time I always make sure to have a jar in the fridge, as you can use it to spice up just about anything. It is great as garnish on soups, as a salad dressing, in sandwiches, or just as a dip for your fave veggies.

Creamy pesto with walnuts and spinach
Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 5 mins
Total time: 10 mins
Yield: about 2 cups or 1 small jar (pictured)

50 gram (1/2 cup) walnuts
60 gram (2 cups) fresh spinach
15 gram (1/2 cup) basil leaves
3 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon fine grained salt
optional: freshly cracked black pepper

1. {Skip this step if your walnuts are already toasted} Toast your walnuts in a hot pan (without any oil!) for about 5 minutes or until slightly browned and fragrant while continuously stirring to prevent the walnuts from burning.
2. {Skip this step if your walnuts are already toasted} Put the walnuts in a heat and freezer resistent bowl and put them in the freezer for a few minutes. This will prevent your blender from overheating when you’re actually making the pesto.
3. Put all ingredients into your high speed blender and blend until you have reached a consistency that is to your liking. I always put the spinach and basil at the bottom, and all the denser, heavier ingredients on top, so that gravity naturally pulls down all the ingredients and there is less need to use your tamper.

Nutritional information per tablespoon (16 gram)
54 kcals
5.5 gram fat
of which 0.6 gram saturated fat
0.8 gram carbs
of which 0.4 gram dietary fiber and 0 gram sugar
1.1 gram protein

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