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Quick & Healthy Recipes: Vegan Spinach-Walnut Pesto

Posted Oct 02 2008 12:16pm
Here is a different spin on traditional pesto I often whip up at home.

It omits cheese (you're welcome, vegan and lactose intolerant readers), replaces pinenuts with walnuts for an Omega-3 boost, and adds some spinach for extra nutrition.

YIELDS:4 servings

INGREDIENTS

4 garlic cloves, whole
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1 cup spinach leaves
1/3 cup raw walnuts
1/4 teaspoon salt (preferably coarse sea salt)
Pepper, to taste
4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Place whole garlic cloves in food processor. Pulse until diced.
2. Place rest of ingredients (except olive oil) in food processor.
3. Pulse; add olive oil one tablespoon at a time through food pushing slot.

NUTRITION INFORMATION (per serving)

180 calories
1.5 grams saturated fat
14 grams monounsaturated (heart healthy) fat
190 milligrams sodium
2 grams fiber
4 grams protein
350 milligrams ALA Omega-3 fatty acids

Excellent Source of: Vitamin A, Vitamin K, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, Vitamin B6

Good Source of: Vitamin C, iron, magnesium, phosphorus

Although you can obviously drizzle this over some pasta (preferrably whole wheat; be sure to include roasted red peppers for a wonderful complementary taste), I also recommend using it as a topping for seitan, tofu, or grilled chicken.
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