Spinach Pesto

Shrimp and Pesto Pizza

When it comes to grilling, there’s no stopping my husband and me. Whether it’s a torrential downpour or a gazillion degrees outside, you will most likely find my husband out by the grill preparing the meat and vegetables. Meanwhile, you can usually find me racing to get the side dishes prepared in the kitchen so that I can spend time with my husband by the grill. Cooking and preparing recipes together is our favorite kind of date night because we love good food, delicious wine, and loving company.

When we’re not grilling on date nights, we’re usually grilling for family and friends. There’s nothing more satisfying to me than inviting loved ones over and preparing a feast. Starting with appetizers, moving to chilled beverages, and then serving up plate after plate of grilled, baked, and cooked recipes is one of the best ways to get the most out of the warm summer months.

Since we’re always cooking and grilling food for not only ourselves but also family and friends, keeping staple foods in my kitchen are key to preparing mouth watering feasts. One of my favorite staple products in the kitchen is pesto. Why? Because the possibilities are truly endless. If you have a jar of pesto in your refrigerator, you can add some to pizza, pasta, sandwiches…in my opinion, truly anything to kick the flavor up a notch and make your dishes full of enormous amounts of flavor that exudes tastes and smells straight from the garden.

Grilled Kielbasa and Pesto Penne

I love a good basil-based pesto but I also enjoy changing up the flavor of pesto by replacing basil with spinach. Why spinach? Not only does it add a new flavorful dimension but it also tricks the tastebuds. The best part is that you can use frozen spinach to create this summery sauce. In other words, make sure you always have frozen spinach in your freezer for those last minute dinner parties. I’m telling you, it always comes in handy when you really want to impress your guests.

So, the next time you’re having a barbeque or you’re invited to a barbeque, have a jar of Spinach Pesto nearby to toss into your pasta salad, poured onto your pizza dough, or slathered onto your grilled panini.

Spinach Pesto


  • 1 10-ounce package of frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 teaspoon grated zest plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil


  1. Place the spinach, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, garlic clove, zest, and lemon juice in a food processor and blend/process until combined. 
  2. Leave the motor running and slowly add in the oil. Continue to process until the mixture is smooth and creamy.

What is your favorite type of sauce?

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  1. So fun seeing you at EVO. I wish we'd had more time in the photography class so I could have spent some time with you one on one. I'd love to get some food photography tips.

    I'll have to give your pesto a try. What a great idea.

  2. I added some basil that was going to go bad and it is perfect – thank you!!

    How long can this keep in the fridge (assuming I don’t devour it all tonight)?

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