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Arugula Pistachio Pesto

Arugula is one of the vegetables that has an amazing flavor that it stands out in its category. The leaves are very decorative; they have like a oak leaf shape. The flavor is bitter and may make some run for hills and others, like me, enjoy using that bitterness to give dishes a certain “je ne sais quoi……..” In this Arugula Pistachio Pesto the nuttiness of the pistachios soften the bitterness of the arugula just a tiny bit.

I have a few ideas for pasta with this particular pesto, so I thought I’ll post the pesto first, and show the pasta recipes later. When I make a pesto that I could use for multiple recipes, I prefer to keep it very basic. What do I mean by that, because a pesto is already pretty basic, so let me explain what I mean.

When I make a pesto, I usually make more than what I need for a specific recipe. I prefer to make the ‘mother pesto’ and keep that in my fridge/ freezer. When I want to use it for another recipe, I will fine tune it, by adding something for that particular recipe.

In the fine-tuning stage I may add more olive oil, like using in on a bruschetta with ricotta or goat cheese, so it spreads easier. In case of pasta, I may decide to add cheese, no need to add more olive oil; you can always use the pasta water.

I hope you were not expecting more, because then I must have disappointed you, and that is the last thing I want. Just wanted to get across that once you need to make a pesto for a recipe, make a little bit more, for a next time.

I prefer to keep my pesto, as you may be able to see in the picture, rather dry, and rather course. I love different textures and this pesto will help with that. If you want it more saucy, you can add some oil. That’s always an easier step than trying to take oil out.

In the recipe for the Arugula Pistachio Pesto; you will find the ratio of the arugula and pistachios I used. Enjoy!

Picture of small bowl of pesto with raw arugula and pistachio nuts
Arugual Pistachio Pesto
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Arugula Pistachio Pesto

Arugula Pistachio Pesto is vibrantly green like most pestos, with a nutty and bitter flavor from the combination of ingredients.
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time6 minutes
Servings: 1 cups
Author: Marinka


  • 3 cups arugula
  • 1 cup pistachio nuts shelled and roasted
  • 1 garlic
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper


  • Place arugula in a food processor or blender and add pistachios, garlic, and olive oil.
  • Pulse/blend until relatively smooth.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.


Calories: 1188kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 110g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Sodium: 19mg | Potassium: 1482mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 1935IU | Vitamin C: 16.8mg | Calcium: 225mg | Iron: 6mg

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