A simple recipe for Arugula Pesto with Almonds, designed to enliven soups, stews, cassoulets, sandwiches, and pasta dishes. It’s vegan and made without pine nuts– adding a delicious peppery brightness to dishes you are already making!
This is one of the oldest recipes on the blog and I’m bringing it all the way to the front because of how useful I think you’ll find it. I first shared it on this Heirloom Tomato Sandwich almost 10 years ago but I feel it deserves a little emphasis. Plus, I pull it out all the time at home so I thought you might want to too. 😉
Arugula Almond Pesto is bright, peppery, and complex and brings dishes you are already making, to their happy place. It really elevates!
It loves to be paired with lasagna, beans, lentils, and casserole-y things, or lathered into sandwiches, tossed with pasta, sauteed veggies or roasted veggies, or spooned over your morning eggs.
Pesto without pine nuts
In our catering business, we found that many people had pinenut allergies, so we began making our pesto without pinenuts. Almonds were the perfect substitution!
So here we are using almonds instead of pinenuts (although pinenuts are fine too), arugula, a little basil, garlic, lemon zest and olive oil.
We intentionally leave the cheese out of this pesto to keep it vegan, but feel free to add.
How to make Arugula Pesto
This arugula pesto recipe only takes about 5 minutes! Just place everything in a food processor and pulse.
It makes one cup – a small manageable batch that can easily be repurposed during the week.
Make sure your olive oil is light and not overly bitter. The arugula adds its own bit of bitterness, but you’ll find it will mellow out after an hour or so, and when combined with food is quite pleasant.
how to freeze pesto
To freeze the arugula pesto, place it in a small jar, cover the pesto with a thin layer of lemon juice to preserve its vibrant color, and seal with an inch of headroom- it will expand as it freezes.
Thaw in the fridge overnight before using.
The Arugula Pesto will last 4-5 days in the fridge.
Hope you enjoy this simple recipe for Arugula Pesto! Let us know how you use it!
Use Arugula Pesto on:
- Heirloom Tomato Basil Sandwich
- Simple Tomato Soup
- Tomato Zucchini Gratin
- Lentils with Blistered Tomatoes and Kale
- Simple Roasted Vegetables
- Bucatini Pasta with Arugula Pesto & Heirloom Tomatoes
- Brothy Tortellini Soup w/ Spinach, White Beans & Basil
- Farmers Market Vegetable Soup
A delicious easy recipe for Arugula Pesto designed to enliven soups, stews, cassoulets, sandwiches and pasta dishes. It’s vegan and made with almonds, basil, and lemon zest adding a peppery brightness to dishes you are already making!
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1/4 cup toasted almonds, pinenuts or smoked almonds
- 1/2 cup packed basil leaves
- 1 cup packed arugula
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2–3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/3–1/2 cup light flavored olive oil(make sure oil is not bitter)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt (if your almonds are heavily salted, use salt to taste.)
- 1/4 cracked pepper
Place all ingredients into a food processor and pulse repeatedly until uniformly chopped and well combined.
For a looser pesto, add a little more oil, and for a sturdier pesto, add a few more almonds.
Arugula Pesto will keep 4-5 days in the fridge.
Keywords: arugula pesto, almond pesto, vegan pesto, dairy free pesto, how to freeze pesto, pesto without pine nuts, pesto with almonds