There are a variety of ways arugula can be used in the kitchen. This recipe for arugula pesto is a prime example. It is a delicious way to prepare pesto when fresh basil is not available. It is great with toasted pita wedges as an appetizer or as a simple way to dress up pasta or chicken.


  • 3 cups arugula, packed
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup chopped, toasted walnuts
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • fresh ground black pepper to taste


  1. Begin by dropping the garlic cloves into a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Whirl the garlic around for a few seconds to chop it up. This will save you from having to do it by hand.
  2. Add toasted walnuts, arugula, parsley, and lemon juice to the food processor and run until all the ingredients are finely chopped.
  3. With the motor running, drizzle the olive oil into the processor and run until blended and smooth.
  4. Turn the food processor off and add the Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. You may need to scrape down the sides at this point. Pulse the blade several times until all the ingredients are well incorporated.
  5. Transfer pesto from the food processor to a serving dish. This will keep for about 5 days in the refrigerator. Store it in an airtight container to keep the arugula from turning an off color.