Pasta pesto with roasted carrots and pesto of carrot greens
How often do you throw away the greens of carrots? My guess is that it happens regularly. But not any longer! Because you can actually make a delicious pesto from it. In this pasta pesto with roasted carrots, I use the carrot greens to make a delicious pesto.
Pasta pesto with roasted carrots and carrot green pesto
Last month I already showed you what you can do with the stem of broccoli. I made delicious broccoli fries from it in the airfryer. But you can also do more with the greens of your carrot than feed it to the rabbits. You can make a nice pesto from it. Perfect combination for this pasta pesto with roasted carrots.
What will you find in this post
It is nice to use a bunch of organic carrots, but an ordinary carrot will do as well. Wash them well under the cold tap and shake them dry and pat the rest dry. Put all the leaves in a food processor and add parsley, pine nuts, nutritional yeast (if you want to keep it vegan) and olive oil.
Don’t add all the olive oil at once. I always do it in portions and stop when I think the pesto is the desired thickness. That comes down to about 150 ml, but check for yourself what you like. You then season the pesto with salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon.
Roasting the carrots
You scrub the carrots themselves clean and cut them into slices of just under an inch. These go into the oven and are then roasted. This is handy because you can also roast the garlic at the same time, which you then incorporate into the pesto.
Roasting garlic gives it a totally different flavor than raw garlic. It becomes soft and almost a little sweet. Really quite delicious! And goes very well with the carrot leaves.
Nutritional yeast is often used as a substitute for parmesan cheese in vegan dishes. To be entirely honest it does taste a bit like it, but of course can’t match the original. So if you are not vegan then I would recommend adding real parmesan cheese through it for the very best results.
I recently made pasta pesto with chicken which is a more traditional version of pasta pesto. Also very tasty of course. But this vegan pasta pesto with carrot can also be easily adapted by adding things to it.
If you want more vegetables then mushrooms or sautéed zucchini would also go very well with this. And if you don’t like the vegan thing, this is great with crispy bacon.
You can also vary the pasta itself. I used linguine here, but penne is also very good here. I find that often just a little easier to eat, but that may be just me. Either way, it doesn’t matter much which pasta you choose.
What to do with the rest of the pesto?
This recipe makes a fair amount of pesto. Just depends on how big your bunch of carrots are of course, but a standard bunch of carrots is pretty big. You can store the rest of the pesto in the refrigerator for several days.
I then like to spread it on a sandwich (delicious with mozzarella and tomato, for example) or add a spoonful to mayonnaise.
What else can you do with carrot leaves?
By the way, you can do more with the carrot leaves than just use them in a pesto. It looks really nice when it’s nice and fresh anyway. You can also add it to a salad. Again, of course, wash it well.
You can then also stir-fry it with noodles for example or make a carrot-green mayonnaise by swirling it through this. To do this, you take mayonnaise and you add the carrot leaves and any other flavorings to it. Using a stick blender works really well.
I found a post by Oh My Veggies that gives you ten ideas on what to do with carrot greens.
Pasta pesto with carrot and carrot leaf pesto
- Food processor or stick blender
- 1 bunch carrots preferably organic
- 0.5 bunch parsley
- 150 grams pasta of your choice
- 50 grams pine nuts
- 150 ml Olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 lemon
- Heat the oven to 200°C. (400˚F)
- Peel the carrot and cut into about 1 cm pieces. Put on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and stir with some oil, salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until tender, about 25 minutes.
- Wrap the garlic cloves in aluminum foil and place in the oven until puffed and soft.
- Toast the pine nuts in a dry skillet until golden brown.
- Wash the carrot tops and dry well. Cut the bottom (hard) part of the stalks. Using a hand blender or food processor, puree the carrot leaves, parsley, puffed garlic, 2/3 of the pine nuts, juice and zest of the lemon, edelgist flakes and olive oil into a smooth pesto. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Cook the pasta al dente and place in a large bowl with a little cooking liquid. Mix in some of the pesto and the roasted carrots. Garnish with the remaining pine nuts.
- The remaining pesto will keep for about 4 days in the refrigerator.
The nutritional values above are calculated per portion. The details are based on standard nutritional tables and do not constitute a professional nutritional advice.