Raw Walnut Pesto

After a long juice cleanse (about 2-3 days) , I would make something raw and eat clean such as the Raw Zucchini Spaghetti with Walnut Pesto. The raw walnut pesto became my favorite sauce for other savory pasta dishes and sandwiches. I received a Christmas gift from my best friend, and it is perfect for raw zucchini spaghetti: Joyce Chen, Saladacco Spiral Slicer. The spiral slicer is easy to use, but can be tedious to clean.


If you would like a simpler method to julienne vegetables, I highly recommend this amazing juilenne peeler, Stainless Steel Kuhn Rikon Julienne Peeler, this creates classic looking vegetables – from shoestring jicama to sautéed zucchini.

It is very simple to make a raw walnut pesto. You need fresh basil, raw walnuts (I get mine at Trader’s Joe), garlic, lemon juice (squeezed), sea salt, nutritional yeast, cold-pressed olive oil (I used Village Press New Zealand Barnea Olive Oil) and fresh garlic.


Raw Walnut Pesto

Yield: about ¾ cup


  • 1½ cup fresh basil leaves, packed
  • ½ cup raw walnuts
  • ½ cup cold-pressed, extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 2 medium garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Salt to taste


Chop the walnuts first in a food processor and pulse them a few times until they are broken into smaller pieces. Add the basil and garlic, pulse a few times more. Add the remaining ingredients and slowly add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula. Pulse again until blended.

If you want a smoother and runnier one, add more olive oil. If you want thick pesto, add more raw walnuts or sunflower seeds. Add a pinch of salt to taste.


Advance preparation: Store them in the freezer for 3 months as long as you coat them with olive oil in the sealed container/jar. They taste really good after being frozen for 2 months. Just let them thaw out and cook it with something afterward. You can also store them in the fridge for several weeks if you plan to use them for a raw dish or snack them with veggies.


After you make your walnut pesto, prepare your zucchini spaghetti using a spiral slicer or a julienned peeler. Shred two green zucchinis for the walnut pesto. You can also mix in with other vegetables such as julienning carrots for variety. If you plan to save half of the pesto, do only one green zucchini. I usually leave the skin on (always get those organic ones) for texture, it is a great pasta alternative, plus it’s also gluten-free.



You can season with crushed red chili flakes for a bit of heat.


Perhaps garnish with Parmela, a vegan parmesan replacer that I adored. I made something similar to this dish that involves a raw tomato sauce, but refreshing for the spring and summer seasons. You can make a raw zucchini spaghetti with the raw tomato sauce (commonly known as Pomodoro Crudo in Italian).


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