Practice Intuitive Pesto

June 30, 2017

For the Love of Food

Have you ever loved a food so much that you’ve dreamt of ways to make it as exciting as when you first tried it?  Or you fear the day you grow tired of your most beloved meal?  Switching ingredients in recipes could keep your favorite foods stimulating.

For Nourishment

Food should be exciting and nourishing.  Diversifying recipes maintains appeal and can provide a wider range of nutrient intake.  Experimenting with recipes can also be quite helpful if you or someone you prepare meals for has a food allergy or food intolerance, which allows you to share your favorite foods with others!

For Sustainability

Fortunately, this time of the year is especially favorable to variety with more items in season.  Choosing seasonal items can support farms and farmers in your community, reduce processing and packaging, and help preserve natural resources.

For Your Own Practice

Pesto is a simple recipe that is easy to modify.  The alternate ingredient combinations are endless as are the uses for pesto.

The essentials to a pesto include: greens, nuts, and flavor.  Every pesto needs some oil, but you can switch that up too.  Play with ingredients from each of these groups to spice up your pesto game!

Assemble Your Pesto

Listed are some ingredient ideas that could be used together for a new intuitive pesto recipe.

Basic Guide:

2 cups of greens  + 1/3 cup nuts or seeds + 4 cloves of garlic + 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Place seeds/nuts/garlic ingredients in food processor. Add greens and blend until pureed
Slowly add extra virgin olive oil and blend until texture is at a desired consistency.

One example could be pea greens in place of basil, swap out pine nuts for cashews, and opt for nutritional yeast instead of cheese.  *Find the recipe for this cashew pesto below!

Cashew Pesto
Traditional pesto recipe with alternative ingredients
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Prep Time
20 min
Prep Time
20 min
  1. 1/3 cup cashews, 1/3 cup nutritional yeast, 4 cloves of garlic, 2 cups pea greens, 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, juice from half a lemon
  1. Place cashews, nutritional yeast, and garlic in food processor
  2. Blend until a paste forms
  3. Add pea greens and blend until pureed
  4. Slowly add extra virgin olive oil and blend until texture is at a desired consistency
  5. Add lemon juice and mix
  6. Serve
Nutrition from the Ground Up

Meet one of our interns: 

Katlynn is a dietetic intern with Sodexo and graduate student at the University of Rhode Island.  She earned her Bachelor of Science in Dietetics from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.  Upon completing her internship and earning her Masters degree, hopes to travel and volunteer while finding her niche in sustainable nutrition as a Registered Dietitian.  She is passionate about seasonality and the the farm-to-table movement.  In her free time she outdoors hiking, running, and doing anything by the ocean.

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