This Easy Kale Pesto recipe is made with 5 simple ingredients and comes together in under 10 minutes! Enjoy it on pasta, as a dip or as a dressing to bring some tasty greens into your next meal!

a small bowl with kale pesto in it

Don’t you just love recipes that are so quick and easy to make and are ready in a matter of minutes? I know I do!

This Easy Kale Pesto is made in a food processor with just a few simple ingredients. This has become my go-to pesto recipe, because it can be used in so many different ways! I love it on top of pasta or mixed in salads.

If you have leftover kale, this Kale Caesar Salad is a delicious option!

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • It’s made with 5 simple ingredients that you probably already have on hand.
  • It’s loaded with nutrition from the kale for some added greens to any dish you want to use this on!
  • It uses walnuts instead of pine nuts which compliment the flavour of kale for a delicious pesto!
  • It can be made vegetarian or vegan.

How to make this Easy Kale Pesto

You’ll start with 5 simple ingredients

  • Kale: loaded with antioxidants and vitamins A, C and K
  • Walnuts: great source of Omega-3s and adds a richness to the pesto
  • Olive oil: a key ingredient to making pesto that binds everything together smoothly
  • Garlic: for flavour. No pesto is complete without garlic!
  • Lemon juice: to balance the flavour. Lemon also helps the body with the absorption of iron from leafy green vegetables.
  • Parmesan cheese (optional): For a vegetarian pesto with a more traditional taste.
  • Salt & pepper: for seasoning!

Preparing the kale pesto couldn’t be easier:

Rinse the kale, remove the stems and give it a rough chop. Then, add the kale along with the rest of the ingredients to a food processor.

a food processor with kale, walnuts, garlic and salt in it

Pulse until it forms a smooth pesto.

a food processor with kale pesto in it

Can I freeze this pesto?

Yes! This pesto freezes well. If you want to freeze your pesto, use a spoon to fill an ice cube tray with the pesto. Drizzle some olive oil on the top of the ice cube tray after adding the pesto. This will help the pesto from oxidizing and turning brown.

Then cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer overnight. Once frozen, remove the pesto cubes from the tray and add to an air-tight container or freezer bag to store.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Use fresh kale to make this recipe. Frozen or wilted kale will leave you with less flavourful and nutritious kale pesto.
  • To make a nut-free kale pesto, substitute the walnuts in this recipe for hemp seeds.
  • Add a handful of basil or cilantro to this pesto if you love the taste of herbs!
a hand holding a spoon of kale pesto

More kale recipes to try

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Easy Kale Pesto

  • Author: Jess
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 mins
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Sauce
  • Method: Blend
  • Cuisine: American


This full-flavoured pesto is delicious and can be made in under 10 minutes!


  • 3 cups kale
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1 garlic clove 
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese (optional, omit for vegan) 


  1. Rinse the kale, remove the stems and roughly chop. 
  2. Add the kale to the food processor along with the rest of the ingredients. 
  3. Pulse until smooth. 
  4. Remove from the food processor and use with your favourite recipes, or store in the freezer for future use!


Use fresh kale to make this recipe. Frozen kale or wilted kale won’t give the same flavour and nutrition.

To make a nut-free pesto, substitute the walnuts with hemp seeds

Add a handful of basil or cilantro if you like an herby pesto. 

To freeze this pesto, add spoonfuls of the pesto to an icecube tray and freeze. 


  • Serving Size: 1/8th of the recipe
  • Calories: 115
  • Sugar: 0g
  • Sodium: 50mg
  • Fat: 10g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Carbohydrates: 3g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 2.8g

Keywords: kale pesto, healthy pesto

If you tried this Easy Kale Pesto or any other recipe on the blog let me know how you liked it by leaving a comment/rating below! Be sure to follow along on PinterestInstagram and Facebook for even more deliciousness!