Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto

Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto

You wouldn’t think it from the limited selection available at supermarkets, but pesto is an incredibly versatile sauce. A quick internet search reveals just how much variety there is out there, beyond the traditional Genoese basil flavour. My advice is to go with the seasons when it comes to pesto – basil isn’t always the best choice. For instance, there’s a definite autumnal feel about this Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto – very comforting indeed.

Though we have drifted through to the very tail end of the spinach and walnut seasons, it is likely that many of you still have some wonderfully delicious leaves and nuts ready and raring to be put to good use. In fact, unshelled walnuts are probably at their cheapest between December and February and though I’m using shelled walnuts in this recipe feel free to crack your own!

Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto

Though they can be eaten raw, walnuts are delicious toasted and tossed through all manner of dishes such as salads and slaw. Added to this, walnuts work particularly well in baking as a result of their pleasant, crunchy texture. Indeed, all things considered walnuts must be counted among my very favourite autumnal foods for their sheer versatility and flavour. I hope this recipe cements them as one of yours too.

Check out my previous recipes for basil pestorocket pesto and roasted red pepper pesto.

Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto

Serves 4

Ingredients:

• 100g spinach

• 70g feta cheese

• 60g walnuts

• 3 tbsp olive oil

• juice of half a lemon

• A pinch of salt

• A twist of black pepper

Method:

1. Break the walnuts up into smallish pieces and toast gently until browned. Using a food processor blend together the spinach, cheese, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.

2. Add 40g of the toasted walnut pieces to the pesto. If serving with pasta boil 80-120g per person, stirring through a generous tablespoon of pesto for each portion. Sprinkle with the remaining walnuts before serving.

Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto

Cost: Since herbs like basil tend to be relatively expensive, using spinach to make pesto is extremely cost-effective; a bag containing 200g should cost around £1. As such, making a batch of this Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto should set you back no more than around £1.50.

 

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27 comments on “Spinach, Feta and Walnut Pesto

  1. cookinginsens
    November 25, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    Super!

  2. Arthur in the Garden!
    November 25, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    Yummy!

  3. Jen
    November 25, 2013 at 6:32 pm

    This sounds delicious, and the perfect use for all the extra spinach I always end up with!

    • frugalfeeding
      November 28, 2013 at 9:52 am

      Thank you – spinach can get rather abundant and it doesn’t last too long!

  4. Sasha
    November 26, 2013 at 12:21 am

    This pasta looks amazing! Adding feta is always a good idea.

    I like to make pesto out of broccoli :)

    • frugalfeeding
      November 28, 2013 at 9:52 am

      It gives the pesto a little tang, which works well! That’s a great idea :)

  5. Amberly Bradford
    November 26, 2013 at 12:41 am

    Yum! I am definitely making this!

  6. Jenny @ BAKE
    November 26, 2013 at 7:52 am

    These photos are gorgeous and I absolutely love that flavour combination!

    • frugalfeeding
      November 28, 2013 at 9:51 am

      Thank you so much – it’s quite difficult to photograph green :D

  7. chef mimi
    November 26, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    I’ve never made a pesto with spinach or feta! But why not? This pasta looks divine.

    • frugalfeeding
      November 28, 2013 at 9:51 am

      Thanks – it’s pretty much impossible to mess up pesto :D

  8. anna @ annamayeveryday
    November 28, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    Love pesto and there are so many variations, haven’t tried it with feta though, interesting!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 4, 2013 at 9:35 pm

      The feta gives it a lovely tang – try it out!

  9. Francesca
    November 30, 2013 at 9:25 am

    This version of pesto is seen a whole lot in our house. Mostly because its a great way to sneak in raw veg to my meat-eating manfriend. Adding feta is a touch of genius : D

    • frugalfeeding
      December 4, 2013 at 9:35 pm

      Haha, very clever. The feta gives it a lovely tang!

  10. spree
    December 1, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    Crikey that looks good, Nick! : )

  11. Leah
    December 2, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Love the sound of this dish. Walnuts, feta and spinach are such a great taste combo

  12. Willow @ Will Cook For Friends
    December 2, 2013 at 8:13 pm

    I couldn’t agree more! Walnuts are one of my favorite nuts, especially in the fall and winter. I made a kale and walnut pesto a while back and loved it. There are some pesto purists out there who would have you believe that basil and pine nuts are the only way to go, but to me, pesto is all about playing with what’s in season and what tastes good. (To the purists, I say, you are missing out on a world of flavor!) I’ve never tried using feta in a pesto before, but I bet it would be delicious, too!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 4, 2013 at 9:38 pm

      I’m all for tradition, I love it in fact… but variety can yield such fantastic results!

  13. foodielovesfitness
    December 5, 2013 at 6:12 am

    This sounds great! I recently experimented with pesto and made a sage one to top homemade ravioli — loved it.

    • frugalfeeding
      December 5, 2013 at 1:32 pm

      That sounds great – must have had a ton of flavour!

  14. Seven Second Rhapsody
    January 23, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    Definitely a recipe to keep an eye on! I love the idea of spinach and feta going together to make an easy pesto that suits most dishes.

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