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Pumpkin seed and Arugula (Rocket)

vegan pesto

If you are new to veganism, and looking for simple and versatile culinary ideas, this pesto is most definitely for you.

The recipe makes around 300ml of the sauce which can be stored in a jar in the fridge for approx. 5 days.


• 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds (you can use sunflower seeds or watermelon seeds as I use at Purple Valley, or substitute with a nut variety of your choice)
• 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (approx. 1 half lemon, but add more if you like a more citrusy taste)
• 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
• 1 cup basil leaves, packed
• 1 cup arugula (rocket) leaves, packed
• 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
• 1 medium peeled garlic clove, chopped (you can increase or decrease the garlic content according to your taste
• 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (Engevita Nutritional Yeast is available in Health Food stores or available in larger quantities online, I suggest: )
• 1/2 to 1 cup olive oil


1. In a small frying pan, dry fry the seeds or nuts until they pop and brown. Turn out onto a class dish to cool.

2. In a Vitamix or other high-speed blender, combine lemon juice, sea salt, basil, arugula, parsley, garlic and nutritional yeast. Blend until smooth. Slowly add olive oil and blend until fully combined. You can also use a immersion or stick blender which will take a little longer to break down, but works perfectly well.

3. Add pumpkin seeds and blend until smooth with a bit of texture, to your preferred consistency.

This sauce is a wonderful condiment, and is delicious tossed through pasta or spiralled veggie noodles. It also works well as a dip for roast veggies or as a salad dressing.


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