If you know me at all then you know pesto is one of my all time favorites, and if you don't well now you do. In our house growing up we ate pesto instead of red sauce (I know, weird right?). Anyway it has held a very special place in my heart ever since and now that i'm dairy-free I have been looking for alternatives to keep my pesto tasting creamy without adding any cream or dairy. Well I've found the perfect solution in the glorious fruit - the avocado (another one of my favorite things to eat). I could quite literally eat avocado with every meal and on pretty much anything- just ask my husband. It adds such a wonderfully creamy richness to this pesto recipe that I promise unless I told you there was no cream in this recipe you would not know the difference or miss it at all.
What you need:
A small food processor or blender
- 4 cups baby spinach
- 1/4 cup of walnuts (lightly toasted place in oven for 10 minutes on 350 degrees)
- 2 cloves garlic (raw or roasted in the oven for 15 mins on 350)
- 1/2 of a hass avocado
- 2 cups basil
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- salt & pepper to taste
Add all ingredients into the food processor and blend until smooth and creamy. Approximately 2 mins. Serve mixed in with your favorite Brown Rice Pasta (my favorite brands are Tinkyada and Jovial both have a great texture and aren't too gummy) but you could also use it over zuchinni noodles or spaghetti squash.
Another bonus to this recipe is that you are sneaking in more leafy greens in the pesto sauce itself with the Spinach. Here I topped it with some fresh organic arugula which gave it a nice textural contrast and depth of flavor.