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Kale & Basil Pesto

Kale and Basil Pesto

I had an interesting year with my veggie garden this year. First of all, shortly after I planted it, my dog, Vegas and Debbie’s dog, Keira had a wrestling match in the carrot patch so my carrot crop this year is less than stellar.  Then, the heat wave that we had early in the summer burnt my spinach and chard and I think I didn’t thin them out enough so they really didn’t grow properly.  My lettuce grew pretty well, but its not as crunchy as I hoped it would be for some reason.  My dwarf sweet peas and green beans were awesome but I kinda missed having huge climbing plants bursting with veggies.  I opted for the dwarf plants because the big climbers turned some of our deck green which didn’t make my man a happy camper.  Anyways, I say all of that to say, the best crop I got this year was my kale! Big, gorgeous, green and sweet.

Kale and Basil PestoKale and Basil Pesto

I am never at a loss for ideas to use up Kale.  I put Kale in tons of stuff, much to my families chagrin.  It seems they aren’t as big Kale fans as I am, but actually, they don’t even notice half the times I chop it up nice and fine and throw it in.  That said, I am always looking for new ways to use Kale and this is my new favorite way.  In pesto!

I m certain Kale in Pesto isn’t new to some of you, but its new to me and I love it so I’m sharing it.  One thing that might be new, however, is my addition of cashews instead of pinenuts.  I went to go buy pinenuts and found a tiny little bag for $9!!  WTF!  Are they that special?  So I put that tiny little bag back on the shelf and grabbed a handful of raw cashews instead. Love cashews anyways.

Kale and Basil Pesto

I gotta tell you, the pesto is awesome!  Garlicy, fresh and fragrant with a tiny chew to it and a healthy dose of nutrients thanks to all those green veggies in there.  And speaking of the color!  So vividly bright green.  Its beautiful.  Best eaten on a crostini, in a sandwich, or with pasta and a little parmesan cheese on top, possibly with some fresh tomatoes??? We are going to post an extra special dish to make this pesto for in the next short while so stay tuned… 😉

Kale and Basil Pesto

Kale and Basil Pesto

4 from 11 votes
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Author: Cooks with Cocktails


  • 1 bunch kale
  • 1 handful basil
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp salt or more to taste
  • 1/2 cup olive oil or more to your desired consistancy


  • Wash the kale well and take out the spines. Tear it up and put it in the food processor. If it doesn't all fit, give it a whiz and then push the rest in.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor and whiz it up really well. Drizzle in a little more olive oil if desired and taste it to adjust the seasoning if need be.
  • Store it in the fridge in a mason jar with a tight lid or something similar.
Kale and Basil Pesto

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  1. This is great! I used 1/2 spinach 1/2 Kale and almonds instead of cashews. Turned out great. I also ground in some red pepper flakes.

  2. Hi,
    About how many cups of kale and basil did you use?
    I’m not so good with estimations when it comes to cooking 🙂

    1. I would use 1 cup of basil and 2 cups of kale as a guideline, but you don’t have to be exact here 🙂 Hope that helps!

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