Natural Health and Wellness for the Whole Family

Kale Walnut Pesto Quesadillas

By Sarah Axtell, ND July 16, 2014

This pesto is one-of-a-kind! It is packed with flavor AND nutrients- lots of antioxidants, minerals (iron and calcium), chlorophyll (a detoxifying component of green leafies) and omega-3 fatty acids. The pesto is dairy-free, but trust me, you won’t be missing the cheese! I add goat cheese to the quesadillas, but if you are vegan or dairy-free you can omit the cheese from the quesadillas and still be satisfied thanks to the flavorful pesto. Here is why I choose goat dairy over cow.

I use brown rice tortillas (available at Trader Joes or any health food store), making them gluten-free. This is an excellent way to pack greens into your family! We had it last night and Cece couldn’t get enough!

Kale Walnut Pesto Quesadillas

Pesto (recipe adapted from glutenfreegirl blog)
1/2 cup walnuts
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
1 bunch of kale, chopped and stems removed
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup olive oil (add more if need more liquid)
salt and pepper
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup nutritional yeast

Quesadillas
6 Brown rice tortillas
1 cup cooked greens (I use sauteed kale. But you could also use spinach, collards, or chard).
1 cup goat cheese (can use any cheese or no cheese at all- I use shredded goat gouda)
1/2 can black beans, drained and rinsed
butter or coconut oil
Salsa (as garnish)

To make pesto:
Put the walnuts and garlic in food processor and process until its a paste. Add the kale and basil. Pulse until finely chopped. Add olive oil, lemon and nutritional yeast and pulse until well combined. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

To make quesadillas:
Spread pesto on one side of 3 tortillas. Add cooked greens, cheese, and beans. Cover with the remaining tortillas. Heat butter or coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook one side of the quesadilla until brown. Flip and cook over side. Cut into triangles. Top with salsa. Leftover quesos make for a delicious (and easy!) lunch the next day!

You will likely have leftover pesto. This makes for a nice spread on sandwiches or a dip for veggies and crackers. It’d be a great spread for pizza too! You can also freeze the pesto and pull it out the next time you want to make these yummy quesos!

Editor’s Note: The information in this article is intended for your educational use only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health practitioners with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health program.


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