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keto pesto

Keto Pesto Sauce Recipe | Low Carb Pesto

Summer Yule
Is pesto keto? Pesto is a keto friendly condiment, as it is naturally very low carb. Use this pesto sauce on veggies, fish, chicken, and more!
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Prevent Food Waste
Cuisine American
Servings 7
Calories 206 kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh sage leaves, chopped (loosely packed; I used pineapple sage but regular grocery store sage leaves work too!)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup pecans, toasted
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  • If your pecans are untoasted, I highly recommend toasting them for 2-3 minutes in a dry, heated skillet (medium heat). The toasting will add an additional layer of flavor to your pesto.
  • Rinse your sage leaves and dry them (a salad spinner is great for this). Give the sage a rough chop and put it in a large food processor.
  • Add the pecans, minced garlic cloves, grated Parmesan cheese, salt, and black pepper to the food processor. Drizzle with the olive oil last.
  • Blend your pesto until it reaches the desired texture. You may need to stop the processor and scrape down the sides with a spatula if ingredients are sticking to the sides. Enjoy your homemade keto pesto!
  • To store leftover pesto: Freeze the pesto in an ice cube tray. Then pop the frozen pesto cubes in vacuum sealer bags and vacuum seal them. Leave your pesto in the freezer until you are ready to use it. (The vacuum sealing step will help you to prevent freezer burn.)

Notes

This is a level 3 recipe (weight maintenance and active lifestyles). Is pesto good for weight loss? Something to understand about pesto is that it is essentially an added fat, and the portion size is SMALL. This recipe makes approximately seven 2-tablespoon servings of pesto. Each small serving will add over 200 calories to your meal.
Even if you follow a keto diet for weight loss and aren't explicitly counting calories, you still need to be in a calorie deficit to lose weight. I tend to think of pesto as a heart healthy way to pack more energy (i.e., calories) into meals. With energy dense ingredients like olive oil (120 calories per tablespoon) and nuts (150-200 calories per tablespoon), pesto is a high calorie food.
That said, it is possible to use pesto in low calorie, high protein meals that may help support weight loss. Skipping the pasta and making a keto friendly meal with your pesto may be one option. Try serving the pesto over a lean animal based protein (such as chicken or fish), with non-starchy vegetables on the side.
It may initially seem counterintuitive that a diet pattern that is permissive with bacon and cheeses can support weight loss. However, well-balanced very low carb meals are often accidentally lower in calories and higher in satiating protein. Not having to constantly use willpower to fight hunger pangs may make losing weight feel fairly effortless.
Nutrition information is for one serving of the recipe. Carbohydrates listed are net carbohydrates (total carbohydrates minus fiber).

Nutrition

Calories: 206kcalCarbohydrates: 0.5gProtein: 1.6gFat: 20.8gSaturated Fat: 2.9gVitamin A: 9.2% DVVitamin C: 5.1% DVCalcium: 17.8% DVIron: 14.4% DV
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