Garden Fresh Kale-Almond Pesto

Garden Fresh Kale-Almond Pesto

I’m an Italian girl with Mediterranean taste buds so when summer rolls around pesto comes into the forefront of my culinary rotation. Pesto is so easy to make and can be played with endlessly. My little urban garden is currently overflowing with at least four varieties of heirloom kale and a gal can only eat so many kale chips, eat so many kale salads, and drink so many kale smoothies before she gets kale’d out. The solution to my kale fatigue? You guessed it, presto pesto!

Kale Almond Pest

My kale pesto has the same umami goodness of a more traditional recipe, but with a little extra kick from the bittersweet taste profile of this blend of kale leaves. I used a mix of laccinato, curly, and a purple-stemmed kale whose name I don’t know but you can use whatever looks fresh and delicious. If you don’t have almonds, pine nuts or walnuts work well too.


I quadrupled this recipe to make 4 quarts, which are now sitting frozen in my freezer for a crazy week when I don’t have the time to cook. These will stay fresh for up to 3 months when frozen, but I wouldn’t leave them sitting for more than a week in your refrigerator. Enjoy with eggs, grains like farro or quinoa, and of course on pasta. Green goodness in a jar – what more could you want from a summer haul!


Kale-Almond Pesto

(yields one quart)



  • 6 heaping handfuls of kale (I used 22 leaves de-stemmed)
  • Juice and zest of 2 lemons
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup parmesan
  • 1/2 cup dry roasted almonds


  1. Add all ingredients to a food processor and blend until it’s an even consistency.
  2. Scrape contents into a wide mouth mason jar.
  3. Store in the fridge for up to 10 days or freezer for up to 3 months.