Swiss Chard or Spinach Pesto

Enjoy the light but satisfying flavors of Swiss chard or spinach in this tasty pesto recipe. The smooth texture and bright color makes it perfect for topping a plate of pasta or dipping a piece of bread into. Pesto may also be made and frozen for three to four months. Makes about one cup.


  • 2 cups fresh spinach or Swiss chard
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/3 walnuts
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan/Romano cheese
  • 1/4 cup olive oil


  1. If using Swiss chard, trim the larger center stem, then steam the leaves for 3-4 minutes. If using older spinach, you may want to steam the leaves for a few minutes. However, if the spinach is fresh, use as is (without cooking).
  2. In a food processor or blender, combine all of the ingredients until the mixture is smooth.
  3. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Recipe adapted from Cornell Cooperative Extension, Broome County