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Kale Pesto with Pine Nuts

Time for new kale appreciation with this easy vegan Kale Pesto. Very fresh and satisfying. And this vibrant green! Almost a green smoothie to spoon!

Small bowl of the Kale Pesto on a plate with zucchini rolls and tomatoes.

OK, I have a confession to make: I never really cared for kale. Now that it’s out, it feels much better. I always thought kale was ‘meh’ at best. I know, I know, there are A LOT of people who love it: in smoothies, as chips, in stews…

It’s also very healthy being one of the (if not the) nutrient densest foods around – loaded with vitamins and antioxidants. Still, kale was never even close to being among my favorites. I’m sure everyone has those foods they can just barely stand. Don’t you agree?

Cloesup view from the top on a small serving bowl of the Kale Pesto

Kale Pasta Casserole

Suggested Recipe: Kale Pasta Casserole

Anyways, I felt that I had to give kale another chance. I was thinking quite hard about how it would be easiest for me to enjoy this vegetable. What would I almost always love? Then it hit me: a pesto! That must do the trick! OK, kale, here is your last chance: you go in the blender, and you will be joined by toasted pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, and fresh parsley. Some salt and pepper to spice up things and then you all together take a nice ride and be a smooth pesto afterwards.

Kale Pesto and fresh vegetables on a plate.

Said and done and the kale pesto did not disappoint. I really, really liked it: it tasted very fresh and satisfying. And this vibrant green! Almost a green smoothie to spoon! 🙂 The pesto is also super versatile.

I used it to make lovely little canapés with roasted eggplant and cherry tomatoes with them. Absolutely stunning. It makes me wonder if I should have given kale another chance much earlier. How do you like this kale pesto? Has it also happened to you that some meal completely changed your opinion about a food?

Kale Pesto | #vegan #glutenfree

Kale Pesto

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

This kale pesto does not disappoint. Very fresh and satisfying. And this vibrant green! Almost a green smoothie to spoon! 🙂 The pesto is also super versatile. I used it to make lovely little canapés with roasted eggplant and cherry tomatoes with them.


  • about 16 oz (450 g) kale
  • 3 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 handful fresh parsley
  • 1/2 pine nuts (60 g)
  • salt, pepper
  • water to thin


  1. Wash and chop the kale. Transfer to the bowl of a blender.
  2. Lightly toast the pine nuts. This will help giving the pesto a more intense flavor. Let cool a bit, then add to the kale.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and process until smooth.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 0.25 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 242Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 4.2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 16.4gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 253mgCarbohydrates: 2.8gFiber: 0.7gSugar: 0.4gProtein: 0.4g


Monday 2nd of March 2020

How much does this make (cups)? Because I’m trying to make the kale pasta and it doesn’t say how much pesto to use just this recipe and I want to sub my own pesto I am just wondering how much to use Thanks!! ☺️


Monday 2nd of March 2020

Hi Maradith! You can expect 1 cup pesto. Hope that helps.


Tuesday 22nd of September 2015

I love kale pesto but mine never comes out this green! I like how vibrant yours is, must be the parsley.

Florian @ContentednessCooking

Saturday 10th of October 2015

Right, the parsley surely adds this beautiful green to the pesto!

Michelle De La Cerda-Nash

Tuesday 22nd of September 2015

I am one who loves kale, but worry not, I have plenty of dislikes that it seems everyone else likes. I've not made a pesto with kale...yet. Love how vibrantly green this is.

The vegan 8

Saturday 19th of September 2015

I'm finally getting a chance to catch up on your blog posts! I didn't like kale in the beginning either, but grew to love it. I love kale chips and also I like to add it to large pots of soup so it wilts some and you get that extra dose of nutrition without having to eat it straight! It's not something I really like in a salad, a bit too bitter! I laughed at what you said about saying to kale "here is your last chance" hahaha! You definitely succeeded because it's just gorgeous Florian! Beautiful, bright green color and stunning pictures. Makes you want to just dive into them!

Florian @ContentednessCooking

Sunday 20th of September 2015

You know, Brandi, I'm so glad I did this Kale Pesto recipe. First, because the recipe rocks. Second, because I'm relieved to read in the comments that I'm not the odd person who could not love kale at first sight/taste. :) The kale in soup idea sounds neat, I might experiment with that. And, of course, thanks a lot for your comment, my friend!

Peter Block

Thursday 17th of September 2015

I know what you are saying about kale. I love the color you got with this recipe.

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