Nettle pesto


There are so many recipes to make pesto! If the traditional recipe normally features basil, it’s also possible to make pesto with other greens. Here I give you a recipe with nettle leaves! If you like wild picking or foraging, then this recipe is for you.

You can eat the pesto on toast with some cheese or raw vegetables, use it as a base in a sandwich, in pasta, or with white fish for example… Enjoy!

Nettle pesto

Servings 1 jar
Prep Time 20 minutes


  • 100 g nettle leaves
  • 35 g parmesan cheese
  • 20 g pine nuts
  • Few hazelnuts
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 10 cl olive oil
  • lemon juice from 1/2 a lemon
  • pepper


  • Pick nettles in your garden or in the woods with gloves on, taking the youngest leaves from the top (the nettle heads), and avoiding nettles already in bloom.
  • Shake the nettles to dislodge insects, wash them in cold water and cut the leaves. Wring out the nettles.
  • Cut the cloves of garlic, and crush the hazelnuts coarsely.
  • In a medium blender, put half of the nettles, half of the olive oil and squeeze lemon juice on top. Blend on high speed.
  • Add the other leaves, the rest of the oil and a little lemon juice. Blend again.
  • Then add the Parmesan cheese, garlic, pine nuts and hazelnuts and mix, still on high speed.
  • Taste to adjust the seasoning (add a little parmesan or lemon juice if you wish) and add pepper. If the consistency is not creamy enough, you can add a little liquid (oil, lemon juice, or a little water).
  • Once the right consistency is obtained and the pesto is seasoned to your taste, put it in a glass jar and cover it with a layer of olive oil so that it does not blacken, especially if you do not eat it within 2 days.


You can add some aromatic herbs (parsley, basil…) or some radish haulm for instance to the nettle leaves.
I mix 20 g of parsley with 80 g of nettles for example.
You can also try other nuts (almonds, pistachios, walnuts…).
Above all, adjust the seasoning according to your tastes and ideas 🙂
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: pesto

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