Filled with a rich nutty essence offset by the fresh flavors of basil and lemon, this appetizer is sure to win over taste critics and food lovers alike, so be sure to make extras as these will disappear rather quickly! But don’t be fooled by the amazing flavor combinations–this recipe is rich in nutrition, too. Thanks to the cashews, this dip is filled with nutrients such as protein, monounsaturaed fatty acids, copper, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, and zinc. They also provide 220 calories in a 1/4 cup serving. While cashews have a lower fat content than most other nuts, they contain primarily unsaturated fatty acids, 75% of which is oleic acid (the same heart-healthy monounsaturated fat found in olive oil), which promotes good cardiovascular health. Studies have even shown that monounsaturated fats reduce high triglyceride levels which are associated with increased risk for heart disease (1)!
Cashew pesto is an recipe to create, and pairs perfectly with other recipes. Check out our Cashew Pesto, Eggplant Pesto “Meatballs”, Cashew Pesto with Pasta, and Roasted Vegetable Lasagna to get some inspiration!
Cashew Pesto Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes
- 4 garlic cloves
- 2 cups raw cashews, soaked overnight or boiled for 20 minutes until tender
- ¼ cup pine nuts, toasted (optional)
- 5 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ cup water
- 2 cups basil, washed
- 2 lemons, juiced
- ½ cup olive oil
- 25 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- In a food processor, add garlic, cashews, pine nuts, nutritional yeast, sea salt and water. Process until smooth.
- Add basil, lemon juice and olive oil while processing. Mix until smooth.
- Core out each cherry tomato and remove the seeds.
- Fill each cherry tomato with 1 teaspoon cashew pesto.
Refrigerate pesto in a sealed container for up to 3 days, or freeze in freezer safe containers labeled and dated for up to 6 months.
Instead of nutritional yeast, you could use Parmesan cheese; however that will change the nutrition information.
Serving size: 1 cherry tomato Calories: 30 calories, Fat: 0 grams, Saturated fat: 0 grams, Carbohydrates: 1 gram, Sugar: 0 grams, Sodium: 10 milligrams, Fiber: 0 grams, Protein: 0 grams, Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
(1) The Nutritional Health Facts of Cashews. Odi Cashew. http://www.odicashew.com/pdf/nutritional_health_facts_of_cashew.pdf