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BUDGET RECIPES: Frozen Pea 'Pesto'

Updated: Jun 19, 2022

This isn’t your traditional ‘pesto’ – there’s no nuts, herbs or cheese. It’s a green sauce that masquerades as pesto. This recipe is a frugal way of using frozen peas and canned chickpeas. A flavourful no-cook sauce that you can whip up in a flash. As this is an uncooked sauce, the garlic is prominent, so adjust garlic to ½ clove if you want a milder taste.




1 cup frozen peas, thawed

½ generous cup chickpeas

¼ cup nutritional yeast flakes (substitute with vegan parmesan or omit and add extra seasonings)

1-2 cloves garlic (or 1 tsp garlic powder)

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2-3 tablespoons olive oil + extra to finish

½ tsp salt + extra to season

cooked pasta for 4 people (reserve ½ cup of cooking water)


Into a blender or food processor, add the peas, chickpeas, yeast flakes, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil and ½ tsp salt. Process until smooth. It doesn’t have to be a completely smooth sauce if you prefer a chunkier texture.

Stir the pesto through your cooked pasta, along with your reserved cooking water. This starchy pasta water will create a creamier consistency. Add a dash more salt to taste and generous drizzle of olive oil.

Serve and enjoy!

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