This deliciously healthy Kale Basil Mint Parsley Pesto is great on sandwiches, quesadillas, and pizzas, or tossed with pasta (hot or cold). Versatile and nutritious, I use it on everything I can think of during the summer.
For the past three summers, I’ve purchased a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share, which means I get a box of fresh produce from a local farm each week. I never know what vegetables I’m going to get or how much because it’s based on the yield from the farm. It’s like getting a surprise present every week.
The one complaint I often hear about belonging to a CSA is that you can end up with hoards of vegetables you either don’t like or don’t know how to use, such as kale, Swiss chard, radishes or turnips. I have to say my least favorite vegetables are probably radishes and turnips. There are just so many of those that I can eat since the kids don’t like them.
I get lots of leafy greens in my CSA Box, and my go-to recipe for using these up along with fresh herbs throughout the summer is pesto. I’ve made pesto with a variety of leafy greens, including spinach, Swiss chard, kale and beet greens, and love the fact that I can sneak these nutritious leafy green vegetables into so many different foods for my kids. They’re not fond of kale, but I’ve found when I mix it in with pesto, they can’t even tell.
This pesto was born the other day when I was going through all the produce I needed to use up before my next CSA Box pickup – kale, basil, mint, and parsley. Virtually any herbs are good in pesto – I’ve used cilantro before too.
The other day, I made a Cool Asian Noodle Salad using this pesto and a soy sesame dressing (recipe to come). It was a nice twist to the typical pesto pasta salad. And, just this past weekend, I simply tossed some hot pasta with this Kale Basil Mint Parsley Pesto, along with some chopped Heirloom tomatoes and Romano cheese. The boys loved it!
Deliciously Healthy Kale Basil Mint Parsley Pesto
Pesto can be made with almost any leafy green, such as Swiss chard, beet greens or spinach. For heartier greens, I like to blanch them first.
- 1 bunch kale leaves only, stalks and veins trimmed
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves
- 1 cup parsley leaves
- 1 cup mint leaves
- 6 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
Bring large pot of water to boil; add kale leaves and blanch until just wilted, about 30-45 seconds. Immediately drain and rinse with cold…