April 3, 2012

Anti-Recipe: Easy Vegan Arugula Pesto


I’ve mentioned that cooking is a stress reliever for me and one of my favorite things to whip up when I’m feeling spread a little too thin is pesto. I’ve actually been making my pesto vegan for some time, not even really meaning to. We just happen to like it fine without cheese. Today’s anti-recipe is for easy vegan arugula pesto.

Arugula is great for pesto because of its strong, peppery flavor. As usual, I don’t have any exact measurements.

Pack a few handfuls of rinsed arugula into your food processor (or blender). Pour in olive oil while blending until the greens are chopped finely. At this point, I dump in several teaspoons of minced garlic, salt, pepper and a few handfuls of pecans. The pecans (or any nuts) are what give the pesto its creamy texture. You can add cheese, but I promise it’s really tasty without it.


Depending on your preference, you can add more or less oil to change the consistency. I pack my pesto in clean glass jars and freeze it for up to a year. It’s wonderful over pasta, spread on fish, in bean salads, or atop bread like a bruschetta.

I also made a batch of cilantro pesto (shown below) using the same process with really great results.


I’m even attempting to grow my own arugula this year in a container garden, but we’ll see how that goes. Do you make pesto or sauces and freeze them to enjoy later? Got any tricks up your sleeve that make this process smoother? We’d love to hear from you!