Broccoli Pesto is a delicious alternative to traditional pesto. You’ll squeeze more broccoli into your life, and this recipe is extra-affordable because no pine nuts are required. Once you taste it, you’ll want to lick the bowl clean.
Why You’ll Love It
- It’s a delicious way to eat more veggies. This broccoli pesto adds nutrients and flavor to basic staples, like pasta, fried eggs, chicken, and more. I want to add a dollop to everything when I have a stash of this in the fridge.
- It’s nut-free. If you are cooking for someone with nut allergies, or just prefer to avoid expensive pine nuts, this recipe is for you.
- It’s flexible. This pesto tastes the most authentic when you use a little parmesan cheese, but I’ve also included a vegan variation in the recipe below, if you need a dairy-free option. It’s inspired by my Vegan Pesto, which is also delicious.
- You’ll get more antioxidants. Broccoli contains the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which may help to promote eye health. It’s also a great source of vitamin C!
- It may help to lower inflammation. Eating broccoli for 10 days has been shown to lower levels of inflammation in smokers, possibly because broccoli contains kaempferol, which has anti-inflammatory properties.
Once you taste it, I think you’ll fall in love with the flavor.
How to Make It
- Steam. You’ll need to cook the broccoli, so it’s fork tender. I like to do this by adding an inch of water to a saucepan, adding in a steamer basket, and then bringing that to a boil. Add in the broccoli, cover, and steam until the broccoli is bright green and tender, about 8 minutes.
- Blend. Once the broccoli is cooked, transfer it to a blender and add in the rest of the pesto ingredients. Blend until very smooth, about 60 seconds. You can also use a food processor, if you don’t mind a slightly chunkier texture.
- Enjoy! Adjust the flavor to taste, adding more lemon juice or salt to taste, and then serve it with your favorite cooked pasta, or as a condiment for any other main entree.
That’s it! Store this broccoli pesto in the fridge for up to a week, and add it to your meals for an extra boost of flavor. One spoonful goes a long way!
How to Serve It
Need some ideas for using up pesto? Try these!
- Add it to eggs. I like to serve it as a topping on fried or scrambled eggs. It adds so much flavor!
- Pasta. This is the obvious choice, and for good reason. It’s a delicious pasta sauce, especially with sauteed veggies added into the mix. Try my Pesto Pasta Salad for a chilled variation.
- Grilled Cheese Sandwich. If you haven’t tried adding pesto to your grilled cheese, you’re missing out. It’s my favorite.
- Add it to a wrap. This would be a delicious spread for a veggie wrap during the week.
- Use it on Mediterranean Bowls. A dollop of pesto and a dollop of hummus are the perfect combination on a quinoa lunch bowl.
- Serve it on pizza. This is a tasty alternative to red sauce, or try adding a few spoonfuls of pesto on top to boost the flavor of your next pizza night. My Almond Flour Pizza Crust or Cauliflower Pizza Crust are two favorites.
- 1 cup chopped broccoli florets (4 ounces)
- 1 cup fresh basil , tightly packed (23 grams)
- 2 garlic cloves (5 grams)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (28 grams)
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (53 grams)
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt (5 grams)
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (35 grams; or 1 tablespoon white miso)
- 2 tablespoons water (25 grams)
- To prepare the broccoli, fill a small saucepan with 1-inch of water and arrange a steamer basket inside. Add the broccoli to the steamer basket, keeping it lifted up out of the water, and bring the water to a boil. Once boiling, lower the heat and cover, cooking until the broccoli is easily pierced with a fork, about 8 minutes.
- While the broccoli is cooking, you can add the rest of the pesto ingredients to a blender to be efficient with your time. When the broccoli is done, add it to the blender and blend until smooth, about 60 seconds.
- Taste and adjust any seasoning, as needed. Serve right away with your favorite pasta, or on a sandwich. Store the leftover pesto in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
If you try this Broccoli Pesto, please leave a comment below letting me know how you like it. I really appreciate your feedback!