Super-Green Vegan Kale Pesto


  • 1 cup packed fresh basil (large stems removed)
  • 1 cup packed fresh parsley (large stems removed)
  • 2 cups packed kale (or other sturdy greens such as collards or beet greens)
  • 3 Tbsp sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, or brazil nuts (use seeds to keep nut-free)
  • 3 large cloves garlic (peeled)
  • 1-2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 3-4 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt (plus more to taste)
  • 2-3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil (if avoiding oil, sub water)
  • 3-6 Tbsp water (plus more as needed)


  1. To a food processor or small blender, add the basil, parsley, kale, nuts/seeds, garlic, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, and sea salt and blend/mix on high until loose paste forms.

  2. Add olive oil (or water) a little at a time (streaming in while the machine is on if possible) and scrape down sides as needed. Then add 1 Tbsp (15 ml // use more or less if altering batch size) water at a time until the desired consistency is reached – a thick but pourable sauce.

  3. Taste and adjust flavour as needed, adding more nutritional yeast for cheesy flavour, salt for overall flavour, seeds for “nuttiness” or thickness, garlic for bite/zing, or lemon juice for acidity.
  4. Store covered in the refrigerator up to 5 days. After that, pour into ice cube moulds, freeze, and store in the freezer up to 1 month or more.

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