dips & sauces, recipes

Avocado Basil Pesto

Do you love pesto, but might fancy something new, something a bit different? If so, you are ready for this super creamy avocado basil pesto. 

All you need is a ripe avocado, some basil, arugula, and spinach, as well as some feta cheese and fresh lime juice. The result is an incredibly creamy pesto with the tanginess of feta, the freshness of lime, the nuttiness of arugula, the smooth flavor of avocado, and the vibrant note of basil. 

Combined with a bowl of pasta, served on top of buddha bowls and salads or filled in wraps or quesadillas, this quick and easy avocado pesto makes everything a bit more special. 

Jump to Recipe

If you love easy and healthy dip and pesto recipes, also check out my pumpkin pesto or my simple vegan queso recipe!

Creamy avocado basil pesto served in a bowl on a wooden background.
This wholesome avocado basil pesto goes perfectly with pasta, sandwiches and salads.

About this Recipe

Usually, you’ll need quite a bit of oil for a homemade pesto. And don’t get me wrong, olive oil and other vegetable oils are very healthy foods. But they are also quite high in calories. Especially in the quantities that are used in most pesto recipes.

So, to save ourselves some calories, we simply omit the oil in today’s recipe. However, this is not at the expense of taste since the creamy, full-bodied note of the avocado and the slightly bitter flavor of arugula will easily compensate the taste of olive oil. 

In addition, arugula and spinach will add some extra vitamins and minerals to this recipe, which is always a good idea. And the result is a creamy pesto which is rich in flavors and comes with just 100 calories per serving. 

Arugula, spinach and basil in a colander.
Spinach and arugula add some extra vitamins and minerals to this creamy pesto recipe.

Ingredients 

The quantities given in the recipe make about four servings of the pesto. Since it is so much lower in calories than a classic basil pesto, the serving sizes are be a bit more generous. 

Please note, I always base portion sizes on my personal dietary needs (presumably those of the average woman). However, you or perhaps one of your fellow eaters may need more or less than I do. So, feel free to adjust.

  • a ripe avocado
  • fresh arugula and baby spinach for some extra vitamins and flavor
  • fat-reduced feta cheese for tanginess and creaminess
  • the juice of one to two limes – for acidity and to keep the pesto from turning brown
  • basil leaves for that Mediterranean touch

Substitutions and Variations 

If you wish, you can also substitute the spinach leaves for the same amount of arugula. Also, feel free to use a full-fat feta cheese for your avocado pesto.

To give this pesto even more flavor, you can also add some sun-dried tomatoes or pine nuts. 

ingredients for the avocado feta pesto on a light background
A couple of ingredients is all you need to make this flavorful pesto recipe.

How to Make this Recipe

As promised, this avocado basil pesto is really easy and quick to prepare. First, cut the avocado in half, remove the pit, and peel it. Then place the flesh in a food processor or, if you use an emergency blender, in a tall container.

Now add the spinach, arugula, and basil as well as the feta cheese. Then squeeze one lime and add the juice directly to the remaining ingredients. If you use a citrus press, one lime should add enough juicy. If not, you might need the juicy of a second lime. 

Alright, now it’s time to blend these ingredients until you have a smooth pesto. Finally, give it taste test and see if you might need to add a little salt, pepper or maybe some more lime juice and that’s it. 

Pesto ingredients in a bowl and a lime in a citrus press next to it.
Tip: Use a citrus press to get more juice out of your limes.

Here’s How to Save this Recipe or Make It in Advance

Stored in an airtight container or jar, this avocado basil pesto will keep in the fridge for up to two or three days. If you want to meal prep this recipe, make sure to consume it within these two to three days.

Your Common Questions Answered

In case there are any questions left, I hope these FAQ will help you. If not, feel free to drop your question in the comments below.

What kind of kitchen equipment do I need for making this pesto?

You can make a homemade pesto with a food processor, blender or emergency blender.

Can I use just spinach or arugula for this recipe or do I need both?

You can replace the spinach with the same amount of arugula. If needed, you can also replace the arugula with spinach, but the bitter, nutty note of arugula will be lost then, which will change the taste a little.

What to serve an avocado basil pesto with?

It goes great with pasta or pasta salads. But it also tastes delicious with potatoes or as a creamy component in bowls and salads. Furthermore, you can use this pesto as a dip or for sandwiches or wraps. 

Save for later

Click the pin button and add the recipe to one of your Pinterest boards. This way you can also easily bookmark the recipe for later. The pin button will appear as soon as you hover over the picture. 

Click on the button in the upper left corner to save this recipe to one of your Pinterest boards.
Use the pin button in the upper left corner to bookmark this recipe in your Pinterest account.

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I hope you like this simple avocado basil pesto and that you give it a try soon. If you have any further questions or suggestions, feel free to drop them in the comments, or send me a massage via email at contact@julesbalancedrecipes.com or Instagram (@julesbalancedrecipes). 

In case, you’ve tried this recipe, I’d appreciate your comment and rating for this recipe. It’s easy to do via the comments section below this post and it would mean the world to me.

And if you loved this recipe, you may also link some of my other healthy dips and pesto recipes! 

Have fun trying them out and bon appétit,
Jules

Creamy avocado basil pesto served in a bowl on a wooden background.

Avocado Basil Pesto

Julia Schmitt
This easy, healthy, and creamy avocado pesto can be served alongside pasta, salads, potatoes, in bowls, sandwiches, wraps and much more. While arugula provides a delicious nutty-bitter note, feta cheese and lime add some tanginess and freshness. 
Prep Time 0 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Pesto, sauce, Side Dish
Cuisine Mediterranean
Servings 4 Portionen
Calories 102 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 food processor alternatively blender or emergency blender

Ingredients
  

  • 1 small to medium-sized avocado
  • 100 g arugula (≈ 3.5 oz)
  • 60 g baby spinach leaves * (≈ 2.1 oz)
  • 100 g feta cheese (fat-reduced) (≈ 3.5 oz)
  • Juice of 1 to 2 limes
  • 2 handfuls of fresh basil leaves
  • salt, pepper

Instructions
 

  • Cut the avocado in half, remove the pit with a knife and peel it. Place the flesh in the food processor or a tall container.
    Avocado pit is getting removed with a knife.
  • Wash the arugula, basil, and spinach thoroughly, spin dry and add them to the food processor alongside the remaining ingredients. Blend until you have a smooth pesto. Season to taste salt and pepper.
    Pesto ingredients in a bowl and a lime in a citrus press next to it.

Notes

*Alternatively, use the same amount of arugula.
Nutritional values per serving:
  • calories: 102 kcal
  • fat: 7.5 g
    • saturated fatty acids: 2.6 g
  • carbohydrates: 2.4 g
    • sugar: 1.3 g
    • fiber: 2.4 g
  • protein: 6.4 g
Keyword avocado dip, healthy pesto recipe, homemade pesto recipe

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