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Beet Green Pesto

Fresh, nutrient-dense pesto sauce made with beet greens and pistachios – a flavorful sauce to spruce up any meal!

Beet Green Pesto - a superfood vegan sauce | #healthy #recipe #vegan

Perhaps it’s my humble upbringing or my background in finance that makes me so cognizant of maximizing my output from my inputs. I try to be as resourceful as possible in all facets in life, and because I cook so frequently, I’m particularly tickled pink when I’m able to make the most out of my ingredients. Parts of produce you would normally just toss (carrot greens, beet greens, kale stems, vegetable peels and scraps, etc.) can be repurposed in many ways!

While I typically use beet greens (the long leafy stems attached to your big bulbous beets) the same way I use kale – in salads, stir fry, scrambled eggs, etc – I am jumping for joy over my new discovery – beet green pesto.

Beet Green Pesto - a superfood vegan sauce | #healthy #recipe #vegan

Truly, I don’t know why it took me this long to think of beet green pesto. I’ve made kale pesto, your standard basil pesto, parsley pestosun-dried tomato pesto, and roasted beet pesto, but it wasn’t until I was checking out the beet stems on my most recent bushel that it dawned on me to use the greens.

Not to be confused with regular beet pesto, beet green pesto is simply pesto sauce made using just the greens. You can use the actual beets and stems for other purposes, but the actual ingredient we care about for the purpose of this recipe is just the leaf. If you’re a regular buyer of bunches of beets, you’ll notice beets typically come with lots and lots of greens. Let’s make pesto sauce out of them, shall we?

Beet Green Pesto - a superfood vegan sauce | #healthy #recipe #vegan

What you do is chop the stems off of the beets. You can use the stems of broth, veggie stir fry, etc. We remove the leaves from the stems and chop the leaves. 

Beet Green Pesto - a superfood vegan sauce | #healthy #recipe #vegan

Add the leaves to your food processor along with some nuts (I used pistachios), garlic (I used roasted – you can definitely use raw), sea salt, cider vinegar, and olive oil. Pulse the ingredients without the oil first to give them a good chop, then slowly stream the olive oil through the opening of the food processor while it’s on. I like my pestos super thick, so I don’t use a great deal of oil (½ cup for this recipe), but you can adjust the amount of oil to your heart’s desire.

Beet Green Pesto - a superfood vegan sauce | #healthy #recipe #vegan

I kept this recipe vegan by omitting the parmesan cheese, but if you’d like, feel free to add ½ to 1 cup of grated parmesan (or aged cheese of choice). As an alternative, you can add a couple tablespoons of nutritional yeast to keep the sauce vegan but give it that cheesy flavor.

As a side note, if you buy bunches of carrots, which include the stems and greens, you can use the carrot greens in pesto as well! Virtually anything leafy and green will work in pesto.

Beet Green Pesto - a superfood vegan sauce | #healthy #recipe #vegan
So there you have it! A super fresh superfood pesto that can be used to spruce up your pasta, sauteed veggies, chicken, fish, salads, etc. I’ll be showing you a recipe tomorrow using this very pesto! Enjoy!

Beet Green Pesto - a superfood vegan sauce | #healthy #recipe #vegan

Beet Green Pesto

Use beet greens in homemade pesto sauce! Using the whole plant is brilliant and brings so much nutrition to your life.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
2 cups


  • 2 cups beet greens, tightly packed
  • 1/2 cup shelled pistachios, see note*
  • 5 cloves roasted garlic, see note**
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


  • Add all of the ingredients except for the olive oil to a food processor. Pulse 5 to 10 times, or until the ingredients are roughly chopped
  • Turn the food processor on and slowly stream the olive oil through the opening at the top.
  • Taste the pesto for flavor and add more sea salt, vinegar, or garlic to taste.
  • Use immediately or transfer to a sealable container and refrigerate until ready to use. Pesto will stay fresh for up to 7 days in a sealed container in the refrigerator. 


*you can use virtually any type of nut or seed in this pesto to replace the pistachios if desired. Try walnuts, almonds, pecans, pumpkin seeds, or pine nuts.
**If using raw garlic instead of roasted, start with only 2 large cloves and add more if you desire more garlicky flavor


Serving: 1grams
Course: Salsas, Sauces, Spreads, Dips, & Dressings
Cuisine: American
Keyword: baked gluten free apple fritter, dairy free, dairy free recipes, easy healthy recipes, gluten free recipes, gut healthy recipes
Servings: 2 cups
Author: Julia
Recipe Rating

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Deanna S

Saturday 14th of October 2023

Just made this today and it is FABULOUS! Upped the (raw) garlic for our tastes and used several different types of beet greens since that is what was growing and ready. EXCELLENT bright green color! Made two batches and froze one. I will be keeping this recipe forever.


Monday 16th of October 2023

I love it! I'm so thrilled to hear you enjoy the recipe. Cheers to using up the full beet root!

Tyna Woods

Wednesday 10th of June 2020

Just wanted to let you know I made the pesto yesterday. Best I ever made! Was kind of blown away that it didn't have Parmesan cheese! And I have never used ACV in a pesto before, always lemon juice. Thank you for this great recipe!


Wednesday 10th of June 2020

I'm so happy you like it, Tyna! Thanks so much for the sweet note! :D xoxo


Monday 25th of May 2020

Thanks for the beet greens pesto inspiration! I had quite a few greens and transforming them into a garlicky pesto was just the perfect way to use them. Some of the greens were a little dehydrated and wilted so I put them in a bowl with ice for a couple of hours and it infused life back into them. We dolloped the pesto on roasted cauliflower for dinner and everyone was elated.


Tuesday 26th of May 2020

What a brilliant idea rehydrating the greens! So happy you like the recipe, Andrea! :D xo


Tuesday 28th of February 2017

What a clever idea! I always feel bad throwing away the greens from different veggies.


Wednesday 1st of March 2017

Same here! So happy you like the idea!

Sarah @ Making Thyme for Health

Monday 27th of February 2017

Oh mama! That shot with the roasted garlic and pistachios in the food processor...DROOL. I'm a sucker for some roasted gahlic. ;)

I love the idea to use up beet greens like these. So brilliant! It always kills me to throw away food scraps, especially now that I live in GA and they don't collect organics. I will be sure to hit this recipe up next time I pick up some beets!

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