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Spicy Green Pesto Jar

Spicy Green Pesto

  • Author: Lauren Kenson | Free Your Fork
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 1 1/4 cups 1x
  • Category: Sauce
  • Cuisine: Fusion


An easy, whole food based recipe for spicy green pesto. With the familiar classic flavors of basil, garlic, and lemon but with a super green boost from kale and little added kick from jalapeno peppers.



  • 3 c fresh basil leaves (loosely packed, about one 4-oz container with stems removed)
  • 4 c baby kale (loosely packed, about ½ one large bag)*
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 jalapenos or serrano peppers (one seeded and one left seeds in)**
  • juice of ½ lemon (meyer lemon preferred)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 c raw almonds
  • 1/3 c extra virgin olive oil


  1. BLEND: Using the blade attachment of your food processor, process the baby kale, almonds, garlic cloves, and lemon juice on high for 10 seconds. Now that there’s enough room, put the basil, salt and peppers in and process on high for 5-10 seconds. Stop and scrape down the sides with a spatula. Repeat until well processed (about 4-6 more times). Then place the processor on low and slowly stream in the olive oil through the top feed tube until well blended (about 5-10 seconds).
  2. REFRIGERATE: Store in a tightly sealed jar in the fridge.


This recipe was inspired by Baby Clydesdale’s Spicy Vegan Pesto. If you’re ever in San Diego – head to one of the many farmer’s markets and be sure to stop by their booth, their sriracha is kind of amazing!

* You can swap baby kale for another green as preferred like baby spinach or peppery arugula, just be sure to use a hearty leafy green and stay away from using any of the more watery greens (like romaine lettuce, etc)
** If you don’t like things too spicy you can either use only half of one of the peppers with it’s seeds, omit the seeds in both peppers, or omit the peppers altogether


  • Serving Size: 1/4 cup