Nothing like a hearty bowl of Vegan Walnut Artichoke Pesto with Spaghetti Squash to start off the new year. Better yet, it’s a lighter meal, with the spaghetti squash, instead of your typical heavy pasta, and this time of year lighter is always nicer after the holidays. For all those counting the calories it gets even better, this pesto is dairy free, so fewer calories there too. You won’t miss the cheese that is usually used when making pesto. The lemon juice, basil and greens give it a nice fresh crisp flavor, and the walnuts and artichokes give it some body.
There was still some spaghetti squash stored in my pantry that had grown in my garden. They keep forever. I only got little one’s last year, most just a little bigger than a softball, small is still good, I just have to cook more of them. I’ve already bought my organic non GMO seeds for my 2014 garden and spaghetti squash is just one of them, along with butternut and zucchini too. I can hardly wait to get started on the garden.
I didn’t want a tomato based sauce to go with this round of spaghetti squash, and thinking of pesto had my taste buds watering. I wanted to change this pesto up a little bit and use walnuts instead of the typical pine nuts you find in pesto. Besides that pine nuts are crazy expensive, walnuts are really my favorite nut, I know, I know you probably thought cashews were my favorite. Seeing as how I put them in so many things like my Lemon Cashew Snack Balls or my No Bake Key Lime Coconut Bars. However I devour walnuts on a fairly regular basis, so they seemed like the logical choice for this pesto. Another switch up with this tangy pesto are the greens, I’m not just talking about basil, adding a blend of spinach chard mix makes this pesto a little more nutrient dense.
Adding a blend of vegetables that you stir fry up just before serving, take this dish combined with the Vegan Walnut Artichoke pesto to the top of the charts. Everyone needs a good comfort food dish now and then and I think this one falls into that category without any heavy, dairy laden, or processed foods. Check out your local market for an organic spaghetti squash and surprise the fam with a little something different, I don’t think they will be disappointed.
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 60 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes
Yield: serves 4-6 people