Add Extra Flavor
Looking to add more flavor to your favorite dishes? The creamy Avocado Spinach Pesto is a delicious and easy way to spice up any meal! Ready in just 10 minutes, this recipe could be used as a dip with veggies and crackers, a sauce for pasta and zoodles, a spread for sandwiches and more. This recipe takes all the flavors of traditional pesto from the basil and pine nuts, but adds nutrient boosters like heart healthy avocados and spinach. We omitted the parmesan cheese to keep this recipe vegan, but added hemp hearts for added texture and protein.
Nutrient Boosters: Avocado, Spinach + Hemp
Not only do avocados add a delicious and creamy texture, but nutrient content as well. Avocados offer dietary fiber, magnesium, potassium, vitamins A, C, E, K, folate, vitamin B-6 and more! Unlike typical fruit, avocados are low in sugar. Avocados are low in saturated fatty acids and higher in unsaturated fatty acids, making them beneficial for heart health. Consuming avocados has been found to increase absorption of other phytochemicals, too! Overall, this creamy fruit is a delicious and healthy addition to this pesto recipe.
Traditional pesto recipes don’t call for spinach, but with the added antioxidants, we thought it would be a fabulous idea. Spinach is a good source of essential nutrients like carotene, ascorbic acid and more. Spinach is also a good source of antioxidants which are extremely beneficial in oxidation-related diseases. To keep oxidative stress at bay, it’s important to include antioxidants in your diet to help fight free radicals. in the body.
Hemp hearts contain all 10 essential amino acids and are rich in protein! They also contain omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids and the rare omega-6 Gamma Linoleic Acid (GLA). GLA is shown to help cholesterol levels, inflammation, hormone balancing and heart health! Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts are easy to add to your favorite foods, but we especially love them in this recipe! For more information, check out the Manitoba Harvest website.
Storage and Meal Prep
You can make this quick + easy recipe ahead of time and store it in an airtight container for 2-3 days in the fridge. If you have a nut allergy, you can always substitute the pine nuts for sunflower or pumpkin seeds. This sauce tastes great in a variety of dishes. We love it with our Classic Turkey Meatballs, Baked Italian Eggplant Dippers, and more!
Avocado Spinach Pesto
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 2 avocados
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 cup basil, packed
- 1/4 cup hemp hearts
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
In a food processor add the garlic, lemon juice, sea salt and pepper and process for 1 minute. Add the avocado, spinach, basil, hemp hearts, and pine nuts to the garlic mixture, and process for about 2 minutes. Stop the food processor to scrape down the sides as needed, or until smooth and creamy.
Serving size: 1/4 cup, Calories: 120 calories, Fat: 10 grams, Saturated fat: 1 gram, Carbohydrates: 5 grams, Sugar: 0.5 grams, Sodium: 65 milligrams, Fiber: 3 grams, Protein: 3.5 grams, Cholesterol: 0 milligrams