This post was originally published here July 6, 2015. I’ve since updated the text and photographs.
I love a good non-traditional pesto recipe. Especially this time of year, when there are lots of little tender green things at my disposals. Herbs, lettuces, stems, etc. I’m game to toss it all in my food processor!
This Pea and Arugula Pesto is a fun one that I find myself making over and over again these days. The flavor is delicate and sweet. And it’s the prettiest shade of pale green.
For the peas, you can certainly use thawed frozen peas in this recipe. But I highly recommend using freshly shelled peas, if you can find them. They really do have a superior taste. So I like to take advantage of them as much as possible while they’re in season.
So what can you do with this Pea and Arugula Pesto? My absolute favorite way to enjoy it is tossed with a small shaped pasta (I highly recommend orecchiette), peas, sausage and shaved Parmesan cheese. It’s an easy, simple dinner that’s very well suited for late Summer. I also like it slathered on avocado toast. But you can really use it anywhere you would use a more traditional pesto. It’s very versatile!
If you give my Pea and Arugula Pesto a try, let me know! And tell me your favorite way to use it!
Pea and Arugula Pesto
- 1/3 cup walnuts
- 1 cup shelled peas, blanched
- 1 cup arugula
- 2 tablespoons mint leaves
- 2 garlic cloves
- Juice from 1 lemon
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- About 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- In a small skillet over medium heat, lightly toast the walnuts until they become fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
- Add the peas, arugula, mint, garlic, lemon juice, salt, black pepper and toasted walnuts to the bowl of your food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse everything together several times, until a course meal is formed. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Then with the food processor running, gradually stream in the olive oil until your desired consistency is reached.
- Transfer the pesto to a clean container. Taste and season with additional salt and black pepper, if desired.
- The pesto can be used immediately. Or stored in an airtight container in your refrigerator for several days. The pesto can also be frozen for longer storage periods. Drizzling a thin layer of olive oil over the surface of the pesto will help to preserve the color/flavor during storage.
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Pesto is definitely a summer staple for me, too! I love this kind, Liz! Such a great idea to forgo the basil and add in peas and arugula. This looks so delish and your pictures are just stunning!
Pesto is just SO GOSH DARN GOOD! Love it on everything. Thanks for the great compliment, Gayle!
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My hubby had to work all weekend. Which means I went to bed at 8 30 on July 4th and spent the day baking. Alone.
I’m exciting. I KNOW.
I LOVE pesto, and this pea and arugula creation is calling my taste buds! pinned!
Oh boo! Well, hopefully you at least celebrated Canada day?
This looks delicious, and a great way to use fresh peas. Pinning 🙂
Thanks, Medha! Glad you love it!
Rinse and repeat and repeat x’s 100. Your weekend sounds lovely m’dear! I ate a lot of tacos and fried foods, so mission complete for summer! xo
Oh yeah, I ate some fried food too. And lots of ice cream!
Such a fun weekend, Liz! General silliness…. yes!! Me tooooo!! Lots of hiking at Mt. Baker, slow mornings, weed pulling and cherry pie for me! Yeeee! It was a good one! I just got bags and bags of various peas at the market this weekend and was thinking of Pea Pesto… but I didn’t think of pairing it with arugula! This sounds just fabulous Liz… I love the vibrancy of pesto, especially pea pesto! Slather it on everything… I like it!
Your weekend sounds lovely, Traci! I hope you try out the pesto!
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I love pesto in every way, shape, and form. This combination sounds delicious, Liz, and I could totally eat it with a spoon!
I may or may not have eaten it with a spoon! 🙂
Oh my, that green is just so VIBRANT!
Thanks, Nicole! I need lots of green to make up for what I ate over the weekend! HA!
Oh this is the best!!! I love pesto in anyway and this is a unique combo 🙂
Sounds like such a lovely weekend! I love playing bocce ball but my team basically never wins. I always blame it on the fact that the game is typically paired with booze 😉 Loving this pea and arugula pesto! I can taste the flavors now!
Ha ha – there was definitely booze. And then I wanted to change the rules too – like we should have to chug a beer, spin around a baseball bat and then throw the balls. That would be more fun!
I’m so jealous of your proximity to the beach! Do you by chance need a roommate in your new house?! I’m glad you had a great weekend! I love pesto and really love it when people come up with creative alternatives to basil pesto! This looks awesome, Liz! I wanna put it on some pizza 🙂
Thanks, Izzy! I could certainly use a roommate – especially a roommate that will make me pizza! 🙂
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LOVE this idea Liz!! I think it would be especially good on a sandwich but I’d probably even eat it by the spoonful. So glad you had a good holiday weekend with your dear friends.
Thanks, Becky! I definitely ate some of it by the spoonful!
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Sounds like an awesome weekend to me Liz! I love pesto and this one sounds so different I have to try it! Little pieces of toasted baguette, some of this pesto and maybe a nice fresh strip of roasted red pepper! Yummo!
You got the right idea, Mary Ann! 🙂
I super duper love this! I just so happen to have peas and arugula in my garden! This will be the perfect way to use them up. Love!
And I super duper love you! 🙂
This is seriously really stunning! Gorgeous!
Liz, pesto is most definitely one of my favorite summer staples. . and I LOVE the pea and arugula combo!!! Gorgeous!
Thanks, Alice! I hope you try it out!
This looks so yummy! Plus both are super easy to grow in the garden…:)
It totally is! Thanks, Amy! 🙂
You just described the perfect weekend, Liz! And you’ve got a perfect pesto here, too – love the peas combined with the arugula 🙂
Thanks, Liren! The weekend was pretty great! 🙂
Eating seasonal is my favorite. This pesto is perfection and I would gobble up every one of those toasts!
I certainly gobbled them all! 🙂
Your holiday weekend sounds DIVINE! It has been so rainy in my neck of the woods that pool hopping has been a no go this summer. I love the sound of this pesto, especially since I’m kind of a pea obsessive 🙂
Hope you get some pool weather soon, Amy!
I need to get me a pool, but first I need to get me a house with a bigger yard that will actually fit a pool. I’m seriously jealous over your summer list you mentioned above. It sounds like a good deal. Love this pesto.
You are welcome over anytime!
This looks wonderful! Yummy!
What a fun way to make pesto! My husband thinks I’m crazy, but I absolutely love peas! I think I’d love this pesto too 😉
Peas are the best! I don’t think you’re crazy at all! 🙂
Pestos are the best! I love how versatile they are and how you can use basically any kind of green. This one sounds bomb and so fresh!! Glad you had a fun 4th. Holiday weekends are always the best, aren’t they!? 🙂
Holidays are the best. Can everyday be a Holiday? 🙂
Love this version of pesto! I too think it would be fabulous on sandwiches 🙂
It’s so great on sandwiches! I hope you try it out, Jennifer!
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I love anything with arugula and anything with pesto so I have to try this! Looks awesome 🙂
I hope you love it!