Of all of the herbs out there, cilantro is one of my favorites. Not only is cilantro remarkably nutritious, its robust flavor reminds me of both warm weather and my favorite ethnic cuisines. Perhaps that’s why, when I looked in my fridge one day and saw a whole bunch of fresh cilantro that I needed to use, I got really excited about my random idea to make cilantro pesto? I mean, I do love copious amounts of sauce on my food, so a pesto from one of my favorite fresh herbs is pretty exciting!
Also exciting is the amount of nutrients and antioxidants in this Cilantro Pesto, since it is packed full of nutrient-dense ingredients. And while the peanuts do disqualify this delicious condiment from being Paleo or Whole30 compliant, it is vegan, low-carb and ketogenic diet-friendly!
Health Benefits & Nutrition Information
Cilantro: In addition to vitamin K, vitamin C and carotenoids that the body can turn into vitamin A, cilantro contains other compounds with intriguing benefits. Phytonutrients protect the body from oxidative stress and fight inflammation, and research suggests that cilantro may support healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels as well as normal blood sugar. The volatile oils in cilantro also may have antimicrobial properties, as research shows that cilantro leaves may protect against food pathogens like salmonella (source). Also notable is cilantro’s ability to help rid the body of heavy metals, since it can bind to and expedite the removal of lead, arsenic, cadmium, and others (source).
Peanuts are a powerhouse in their own right, providing protein, fiber and healthy fats in addition to the minerals copper, manganese, molybdenum and potassium and vitamins B1 (thiamin), B3 (niacin), biotin and vitamin E. But the list doesn’t stop there. Peanuts also provide resveratrol, the same powerful antioxidant found in red wine, and more antioxidants than carrots and apples! (source)
Put all of the ingredients above together with avocado oil and lime juice and you have a vegan and low-carb condiment packed full of robust flavors, nutrients and antioxidants!
Tips, Tricks & Ingredients
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There are only a couple of tricks that make this recipe easier. The first and most important is a good food processor. I love my Ninja Master Prep, as those of you who follow my blog already know. It’s so affordable, and the food processor portion did a rock star job of making this Cilantro Pesto with Peanuts and Lime!
Tip number two is where to buy avocado oil. Costco sells is for the best price, but if you don’t have a Costco membership, you can find Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil for a great price at www.vitacost.com, or at your local Natural Grocers or King Soopers (a.k.a. Kroger or City Market).
This Cilantro Pesto with Peanuts & Lime goes really well with deep umami flavors, like a marinated and grilled steak or this Honey Lime Chicken by Rasa Malaysia. It could also make an excellent sauce on a lettuce wrap or even tofu. However you use this Cilantro Pesto with Peanuts & Lime, I hope you enjoy it!
Cilantro Pesto with Peanuts & Lime
This Cilantro Pesto with Peanuts and Lime is packed with tons of robust flavor and lots of nutrients! Vegan and low-carb ingredients make this a versatile condiment that would be delicious on chicken, beef, or tofu.
Vegan | Low-Carb | Ketogenic Diet-friendly | Sugar-free | Nightshade-free
- 2 cups cilantro (leaves and stems are both okay)
- 1 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1/4 cup peanuts roasted and lightly salted
- 2 Tbsp lime juice
- 1/4 cup avocado oil
- 1/2 tsp salt, or more for taste or if unsalted peanuts are used
Place all ingredients in a food processor. Blend until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed.
Taste when finished and add more salt, if necessary, 1/8 to 1/4 tsp at a time.
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