Carrot Leaves Recipe (Super Yummy Pesto!)
Save those fresh carrot tops and try this carrot leaves recipe for delicious pesto. You’ll save money, help prevent food waste, and have something tasty to show for your efforts!
- 2 cups carrot leaves, chopped small (remove thickest stems; this is approximately the amount from one bunch of carrots)
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- ¼ cup pine nuts
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- black pepper, to taste
Set a pot of water to boil. Once boiling, add the carrot leaves and let cook for 1-2 minutes.
After the time is up, quickly drain the carrot leaves and plunge them into ice-cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain the carrot greens again and put the greens into a food processor. (This blanching process helps to remove some of the bitterness from the greens.)
Add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor. Blend until the pesto achieves the desired texture. You may need to stop the processor and scrape down the sides with a spatula if food is sticking to the sides.
Enjoy! We were surprised at how much this tastes like basil pesto!
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This is a level 3 recipe (weight maintenance and active lifestyles). This recipe makes seven servings that are approximately 2 tablespoons each. Leftovers can be frozen in individual servings in an ice cube tray and then stored in freezer bags in the freezer.
Pesto is a high-calorie condiment that has a lot of added oil in the form of olive oil. Because of this, I don’t consider it one of the best ways to flavor your food if you have a weight loss goal. It’s typically added to lower-protein dishes such as pasta, where it may not promote satiety. (Tip: try it on a legume-based pasta for additional protein.)
That said, pesto is packed with heart-healthy ingredients that are mainstays in the Mediterranean diet. Just because a food is high-calorie does necessarily mean it is less healthy! Adding this pesto to meals can be a great way to give your meal an energy boost if you need it.