Spinach Pesto

Since I always have frozen spinach in the fridge (note: you can use fresh baby spinach leaves too), I have been thinking about creative ways of using them. For those who prefer a milder and sweeter version of the traditional basil pesto, this recipe is for you.

See Also:

Using frozen spinach is cheaper and more convenient than fresh baby spinach leaves, plus I can’t really tell the difference with the end result. Now I can make the pesto anytime I fancy!

Spinach Pesto Pasta Recipe

Pesto is really easy to make with a food processor, keeps well in fridge and freezer, and you can make so many quick meals with it! The first meal I made with it is spinach pesto pasta. Tomorrow, I’ll be making salmon pesto in paper parcels for dinner!

Spinach Pesto Recipe

Spinach Pesto Recipe

This recipe uses frozen spinach for convenience. You may substitute 120 grams frozen spinach with 60 grams fresh baby spinach leaves instead.

Besides food processor, you may also use a traditional mortar and pestle.


  • 120 grams frozen spinach thawed*, squeezed dry
  • 50 grams grated parmesan cheese (Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano-Reggiano)
  • 30 grams pine nuts toasted in a dry pan
  • zest of half lemon optional
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice optional
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled
  • 120 ml extra-virgin olive oil & a little more as needed
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt to taste
  • freshly cracked black pepper to taste

 * Thaw frozen spinach in the microwave on medium, for about 3 minutes (varies according to your microwave; stir through halfway for even cooking). The spinach need not be warmed; just thawing it (still cold) will suffice. Squeeze spinach very dry either by wringing them in your hand, or using two spoons to squeeze out the water.


  1. Blend everything together in a food processor to a smooth paste. If the pesto becomes too thick, add more olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Pour a thin layer of olive oil over the surface to slow the discoloration. Transfer pesto to a covered glass container. Keeps in fridge (covered) for at least  week.
  3. Freeze extra pesto in ice-cube trays. As soon as they freeze, transfer pesto cubes to a freezer ziplock bag. Keeps in the freezer for months.