Pesto and pasta. Pasta and pesto. The two just make sense together—but have you tried branching out from the bowl of carbs? If not, we've got a healthy pesto recipe—or 12—that'll take your taste buds on a delicious ride
Spinach Pesto Quinoa Bowl
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For days when you just can't be bothered to spend a ton of time at the stove, this 15-Minute Spinach Pesto Quinoa Bowl can be your new go-to. Not only will you score vitamin E from the whole grains, but you'll net vitamin K from the spinach-based pesto. Plus, that cheesy craving is satisfied with a sprinkle of Parmesan on top. Mmm...cheese.
Photo: Table for Two
Pumpkin Pesto, Date and Chèvre Sandwich
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Pumpkin isn't reserved for that Starbucks latte or a Thanksgiving pie. Instead of opting for the canned variety, cook the squash (it tastes better, trust us), then turn it into a subtly sweet pesto. (P.S. Include the seeds for a hit of magnesium and protein). Layer onto bread with dried dates and creamy chèvre cheese and all of a sudden you've got a Pumpkin Pesto, Date and Ripe Chèvre Sandwich, better known as the sandwich of every Instagram foodie's dreams.
Photo: Eat in My Kitchen
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When food is vegan- and paleo-friendly, you're off to a solid friend-pleasing start. Add a delicious savory pecan-and-spinach filling to mushroom caps, like in these Vegan Pesto Stuffed Mushrooms and, well, you really can't go wrong.
Smashed Chickpea, Avocado, and Pesto Salad Sandwich
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Skip the deli for lunch and opt for this homemade Smashed Chickpea, Avocado, and Pesto Salad Sandwich instead. You'll score healthy fats from the avocado, fiber from the chickpeas, and vitamin K from the spinach-basil pesto. (For more healthy lunch ideas, try these Healthy Food Swaps to Slim Down Your Sandwich.)
Photo: Two Peas and Their Pod
Slow Cooker Pesto Chicken Salad
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The easy part: Making this Crock-Pot Pesto Chicken Salad. The hard part: Deciding which way to eat it. Whether you enjoy it alone in a bowl, wrapped in a lettuce leaf, or on top of salad, it's all seriously delicious. Decisions, decisions.
Photo: Lexi's Clean Kitchen
Tomato Pesto Tarts with Prosciutto
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When food is bite-sized, it's that much more fun to eat. We'll just consider it a bonus that this recipe for Tomato Pesto Tarts with Proscuitto is ready to serve in less than half an hour.
Photo: Kitchen Treaty
Savory Pesto Quinoa Breakfast Bowl
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Savory breakfast lovers are going to love this Savory Pesto Quinoa Breakfast Bowl. The ratio of kale to basil is perfectly balanced, so you don't end up with a morning meal that tastes like a salty salad and you get a hefty head start on meeting your daily quota of veggies. Win-win.
Photo: Simply Quinoa
Twice-Baked Spaghetti Squash with Pesto and Parmesan
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Need a gluten-free-friendly dinner? This Twice-Baked Spaghetti Squash gets a flavor burst from the pesto, and grating Parmesan on top helps satisfy that craving for cheese. (Speaking of cheese, try The 10 Best Cheese Recipes to Satisfy Your Cravings.)
Photo: Kalyn's Kitchen
Zucchini Noodles with Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto
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When you want to lighten up the carb-load and boost your veggie intake, these Zucchini Noodles with Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto belong on your plate. Pair 'em with the flavor-packed sun-dried tomato pesto for a dose of vitamin C and lycopene, an antioxidant that could lower your risk of cancer and heart disease. (Don't miss out on these 12 Sensational Spiralized Veggie Recipes.)
Photo: Just a Taste
Pesto, Salmon, and Italian Veggies
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Dinners made in foil = easy to make, a breeze to clean up, and bursting with locked-in flavor. So, of course, this recipe for Pesto Salmon and Italian Veggies in Foil is a real winner.
Photo: Cooking Classy
Pesto Grilled Shrimp
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Shrimp on the barbie? Okay. Brighten up standard grilled fare with this Pesto Grilled Shrimp, then serve on top of a bed of greens. Or just eat it straight off the stick because, well, why wouldn't you?
Photo: Closet Cooking