Breaking up is hard to do. Sometimes you hang onto that last little bit before letting go. The store-bought pesto I’ve been eating had just enough Parmesan cheese in it to remind me that I’m “vegan” but not enough to cause major damage. Still, I knew it was time to change up one of my favorite recipes and start enjoying kale pesto instead.
Anyone who knows me, knows how much I love basil. Basil is my main squeeze. Basil had me at hello. Basil is like the always faithful boyfriend who never lets you down… until he does. This year, our basil plants didn’t grow well, and the basil at the store is just sad. I like the store-bought pesto, but since it contains dairy, I can’t have it anymore.
Meanwhile, kale and I have this sorta love-hate relationship. I know that kale is super healthy for you, but the taste… blech! Kale is like the James Dean bad boy. You know you want to be with him, you can’t stand to be with him, yet… you keep going back to him.
Basil left me no choice. I had to break up with him. On a post-it note. It’s not you… it’s me. I was bound and determined to make a kale pesto recipe that left me just as satisfied as when I was dating basil.
If you don’t want to cut up a bunch of kale, buy one of those big bags at the salad bag section at your grocery store. Kale does the same thing as spinach – it starts out big and boisterous but quickly disintegrates. Rather than the traditional way of making pesto with basil where you add the basil and ingredients and voila you are done… with kale, you need to keep adding more and more kale. You will need a lot more than you think!
When making pesto, this recipe or any kind, you always want to add and mix your ingredients first, and then gradually add the olive oil while the food processor is running. This process is called emulsify and it’s how the oil blends and binds.
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If you have never tried any of the superfoods from Living Intentions, they are wonderful healthy add-ons to your recipes. I used the vegan cheesy salad booster to this pesto and it blended quite well with the nutritional yeast to give it a faux Parmesan taste.
The kale pesto was a huge success. It has the taste of basil pesto – including the Parmesan – but with kale and no cheese. Don’t worry basil… maybe we can get together for coffee sometime. I still want to be friends.
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Like pesto? Be sure to check out 297+ Surprising New Ways to Make Pesto – Dairy Free and Vegan.
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Love, hugs, and loving on the bad boy of greens.
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