Homemade Pesto Quinoa

Last Updated:
July 20, 2023

Once you try this pesto, you'll be reluctant to go back to store-bought! As an added bonus, it's ridiculously easy to throw together.

Jump to recipeHomemade Pesto Quinoa

Pesto seems to be one of those elusive toppings that everyone loves, but nobody ever makes...at least not homemade! We think that's a shame, which is why we've developed our own ultra-easy pesto recipe—one that capitalizes on the nuttiness of nutritional yeast, amplifies the garlic, and goes heavy-handed on the lemon juice. If you're a fan of tart, savory sauces, this ought to please your palate!

In this particular instance, we've chosen quinoa as the vehicle for the pesto, but you should feel free to pair it with anything that fits your fancy; whether it accompanies rotini, is smeared onto bruschetta, or used as a dip for roasted vegetables, you should find it equally delicious!

Homemade Pesto Quinoa

Once you try this pesto, you'll be reluctant to go back to store-bought! As an added bonus, it's ridiculously easy to throw together.

Prep time
15 minutes
cook time
20 minutes
total time
35 minutes


  • 1 cup kale
  • 1/2 cup diced basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts or chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 lemons
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • Pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes


  1. Wash and halve a pint of cherry tomatoes. Place on a paper towel and salt so the excess water and juice drains.
  2. Thoroughly rinse quinoa in a fine mesh sieve. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine quinoa with vegetable broth and wait for the mixture to boil. Reduce heat and cook an additional 12-15 minutes, until quinoa has reached desired consistency. When quinoa is done, add pepper and garlic powder, then fluff with a fork.
  3. In a blender, combine kale, basil, nuts, olive oil, nutritional yeast, garlic, sea salt, pepper, and the juice of two lemons. Puree on high. If mixture is too thick, add more olive oil until it has reached the desired consistency. Taste and add more salt if desired.
  4. Add fresh pesto to quinoa and mix in until well-combined. Add your cherry tomatoes, divide among four bowls, and enjoy!

Additional Notes:

Pro Tip: Feel free to get creative with your toppings! Experiment with sautéed mushrooms, chickpeas, or our fabulous roasted rainbow vegetables to add extra pizzaz to this recipe.

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