Pesto and pasta is such a classic dinner combination that when I heard about Carrot Top Pesto I knew I needed to try it out. Not only is Carrot Top Pesto vegan but it also uses the bits that you generally throw in the compost. On the last day of the Farmer’s Market on the Terrace I picked up onions, potatoes, tomatoes, watermelon and carrots with their tops on. I was on a mission and Carrot Top Pesto was my goal.
When making your own Carrot Top Pesto I recommend, when possible, to use organic produce. Carrots are also quite easy to grow so if that is an option then go with it.
I think it is great being able to find alternative ways to use vegetable “waste” especially when they result in a delicious and nutritious surprise. Did you know that carrot tops have “significant amounts of vitamin A, dietary fiber, vitamin C, calcium, and iron. There is no fat or cholesterol in these greens, and there are roughly 90 calories in 1 cup of these raw greens. These greens also contain vitamin K and various phenolic compounds and carotenoids, along with trace amounts of other antioxidants.” Organic Facts also goes into further detail so check them out.
Vegan Carrot Top Pesto Recipe
1/3 cup roasted pine nuts, golden brown
2 cloves garlic
1 cup chopped carrot tops, green parts only
1/2 lemon, juice only
1/3 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
In a blender or food processor first blend together the toasted pine nuts and garlic. Add in the chopped carrot tops, lemon juice, olive oil and the salt and pepper. Blend until you have reached your desired consistency. Remember that carrot top greens are rather stringy so make sure to chop away when preparing them.
If you are not using the entire amount at once make sure to save in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a week. Alternatively you can also freeze for later use.
Have you ever made vegan carrot top pesto before? How else do you like to reduce food waste at home?