Pasta with pesto sauce is the perfect meatless meal, since pesto typically contains both nuts and cheese for protein. But for those with a nut allergy, pesto sauce is usually a no-go. So this recipe uses sunflower seeds instead, which contain a similar amount of protein and healthy fats and even have a bit of a nutty flavor! This recipe comes to us from Diana K. Rice, RD, The Baby Steps Dietitian, who created this recipe in light of her daughter’s nut allergy.
Makes 3 1/2 cup batches (4 servings each)
2 cups packed basil leaves
3-4 cloves garlic or garlic dots
1/2 cup raw unsalted sunflower seeds
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp. lemon juice
2 oz. un-grated or 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese*
Salt to taste
Add all ingredients to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until well-combined, scraping down sides as necessary.
Serve immediately over cooked pasta or portion into freezer-safe containers for later use.
*Depending on the saltiness of the cheese you use, you may not need to add salt at all.