Pesto recipe

Greens Pesto

This easy pesto recipe can be made using any greens you have on hand – store-bought or foraged – and is perfect for whipping up while you’re on the road.

Sophie Merkens spent five months travelling Aotearoa in her van, Zephyr Florence, to find the best ingredients in NZ. Here she shares some of her favourite snacks and easy meals:

“I always keep a jar of pesto in the fridge because it’s so versatile. Basil, parmesan and pine nuts is the most common, but you can use any fresh garden herbs (sage, mint, coriander, parsley) and combinations of foraged greens (young dandelion or dock leaves, onion weed, nasturtium leaves, chickweed, or watercress). Use any seeds and nuts: walnut, almond, sunflower seeds and pumpkins seeds are my go-tos. I’ll often add feta instead of parmesan for a creamier pesto. If vegan or dairy-free, swap the cheese for a tablespoon of miso paste. While on the road, I regularly prepared sage and almond pesto over gnocchi (store bought) and foraged walnut and watercress.”



  • 2 cups tightly packed greens, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup nuts or seeds, toasted
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 100g feta, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste


  1. Add all ingredients (except seeds or nuts) to a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Add seeds or nuts and blend to your desired consistency.
  3. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Serve or store in the fridge until ready to use.


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