Parsley Pesto with Arugula

BY : PUBLISHED : November 17th, 2022

Not sure what to do with all the parsley you bought? How about making it into parsley pesto? This homemade vegan pesto is perfect for grains, vegetables, and pasta to add a splash of flavor. 

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completed Parsley Pesto with Arugula in a jar alongside a plated dish

Why This Recipe Works

  • A great way to use up an abundance of parsley and arugula from your summer garden.
  • A nice flavor change for pesto that you can use in all the same ways you use regular pesto.
  • Simple preparation and it freezes great!

What Goes Into This Recipe

All you need are six simple ingredients to make parsley pesto with arugula! Here's what you need:

  • Garlic: Fresh garlic provides the best flavor for parsley pesto.
  • Parsley: Use flat-leaf parsley with its subtle flavors of herb and lemon.
  • Arugula: Adds peppery flavor to the pesto. Aim for arugula with smaller leaves that are younger and tender and likely to have a more delicate flavor. Sometimes the peppery bite of arugula can be a bit overwhelming.
  • Walnuts: A budget-friendly option for pine nuts which are usually used in pesto. The flavor of walnuts works great with the flavors of parsley and arugula.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: In my book, the essential oil for making pesto. It brings a bit of bright olive flavor to the pesto which isn’t found in other oils.
  • Lemon juice: Freshly squeezed is best!

How To Make Parsley and Arugula Pesto

Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse to blend until everything is finely chopped. You may need to scrape down the sides a few times. 

Expert Tips and FAQs

  • Want to make just parsley pesto? Great, simply replace the arugula with parsley.
  • What about arugula pesto? Eliminate the parsley and use double the amount of arugula. 
  • A food processor is best for crushing herbs. A small bullet blender will work but might take longer and be difficult.
  • Try not to overprocess the pesto in the food processor. This can cause the olive oil to turn bitter.
What does parsley and arugula pesto taste like?

At first bite, the flavor of the lemon, herb, and green flavor of the parsley comes through and it finishes with the peppery hints from the arugula. It also has a bit of brightness in its flavor from the olive oil and lemon juice.

completed Parsley Pesto with Arugula in a jar alongside a plated dish

How to Store

  • Refrigerator: Store in an airtight jar or container for up to five days in the refrigerator. The color will darken slightly as it sits, especially the top layer which is exposed to air. You can usually either scrape off this top layer or stir it into pesto but it won’t be bright green after the first day or so.
  • Freezer: Pesto freezes great! I like to freeze it in an ice tray. Then once it’s frozen, pop the pesto cubes out and store them in a container. This way I can take out exactly what I need to use. It thaws out in about 30 minutes to an hour at room temperature.

How to Use Parsley Arugula Pesto

You can use parsley pesto with arugula in all the ways you normally use pesto. Here are some of my favorites ways:

completed Parsley Pesto with Arugula in a jar alongside a plated dish

More Vegan Sauce Recipes

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

completed Parsley Pesto with Arugula in a jar alongside a plated dish

Parsley Pesto with Arugula

Stephanie Lundstrom
Not sure what to do with all the parsley you bought? How about making it into parsley pesto? This homemade vegan pesto is perfect for grains, vegetables, and pasta to add a splash of flavor. 
5 from 43 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 0 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Dips and Sauces
Cuisine Italian
Servings 2 servings
Calories 175 kcal
METHOD Food Processor
DIET Vegan

Ingredients
  

  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 cup of parsley
  • 1 cup of arugula
  • ¼ cup of walnuts
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 Tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice

Instructions
 

  • Put all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.

Notes

  • Want to make just parsley pesto? Great, simply replace the arugula with parsley.
  • What about arugula pesto? Eliminate the parsley and use double the amount of arugula. 
  • A food processor is best for crushing herbs. A small bullet blender will work but might take longer and be difficult.
  • Try not to overprocess the pesto in the food processor. This can cause the olive oil to turn bitter.

Nutrition

Calories: 175kcalCarbohydrates: 5gProtein: 4gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 8gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gSodium: 311mgPotassium: 284mgFiber: 2gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 2769IUVitamin C: 46mgCalcium: 77mgIron: 3mg
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedonaBudget! 🙂

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

About Stephanie Lundstrom

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Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Erin says

    5 stars
    Love this twist on pesto ... delicious and a great way to use up parsley!

    • Andrea White says

      Yesss - agreed! So so delicious!

  2. Gina H. says

    5 stars
    So fresh and healthy! This recipe is top notch for flavor. Tasty on pretty much anything!

  3. Beatriz says

    5 stars
    This pesto is next level! Love it 🙂

  4. Rachel says

    5 stars
    Love this recipe! I never know what to do with leftover parsley—from now on I'm making this!

  5. Jenn says

    Talk about upgrading a meal !

  6. Andrea White says

    5 stars
    Love how easy this pesto is to whip up!

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