A citrus pea pesto recipe made with cannellini beans. It’s fresh tasting without the need for seasonal ingredients and the perfect topping for pasta!

5 days ago the sun was out, birds were chirping, Ulysses was mowing the lawn, I was giving Ginger a bath outside and an early Sunday dinner of a fresh, pea pesto sounded delicious.

Citrus Pea Pesto

As I’m writing this, this is the weather forecast.

Citrus Pea Pesto

Mother Nature can be one sick biatch.

Yes, those are snowflakes. Oh, and look! They reappear on Saturday. How thoughtful of them. Today is my brother’s birthday, (Happy Birthday Adrian!) 27 years ago it was 90 degrees, or so my mother says, I don’t remember much when I was 2. Seriously New York? Get your shit together.

We (that’s me and you all) haven’t experienced a winter together yet but I’m giving fair warning, expect many references to how much I hate this God forsaken state for the next 6 months. It will chill us to the bone, look like a nuclear bomb went off outside, make me spend thousands of dollars in oil and keep me cooped up inside like caged animal. 5 days was not enough transition for me to mentally prepare.

I miss Florida.

Pea Pesto

Let’s go back to Sunday night instead.

How do you satisfy a craving for pesto when your basil plant has all but kicked the bucket? Peas and baby spinach! Oh, and some cannellini beans which kind of makes this a pseudo hummus but I’m still calling it pesto. It’s kind of got the best of both worlds actually. Fresh tasting like pesto, creamy like hummus. Sounds like the perfect topping for pasta, doesn’t it?

Other uses?

Dip some baby carrots in it, slather it on bread for a sandwich, use it as “dressing” for a salad, use it in place of mayo in a tuna salad.

I made enough for about a pound of pasta but then ended up only using about half a pound of an already open box so I got a bit creative with the leftovers.

Pea Pesto with Citrus

My favorite part about this though is that you get the satisfaction of a fresh tasting pesto without the need for seasonal ingredients.

This could end up being my form of therapy for the next six months. It’s a bit cheaper than a psychologist.

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Citrus Pea Pesto

Servings: 2 servings
Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
A citrus pea pesto recipe made with cannellini beans. It's fresh tasting without the need for seasonal ingredients and the perfect topping for pasta!


  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 15 ounces canned cannellini beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 cup loosely packed baby spinach
  • 1 clove garlic
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated


  • Place all ingredients in a food processor except for olive oil.
  • Pulse until finely chopped.
  • Scrape down the sides and turn on food processor.
  • While food processor is running, slowly pour in olive oil.
  • Process until creamy and smooth.
  • Transfer to a bowl and mix in parmesan cheese.


Serving: 1SERVINGCalories: 457kcalCarbohydrates: 45gProtein: 21gFat: 25gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 9mgSodium: 689mgPotassium: 278mgFiber: 15gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 2059IUVitamin C: 34mgCalcium: 316mgIron: 6mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Sauces, Dressings & Spreads
Cuisine: American

Founder and Writer at Running to the Kitchen | About

Gina Matsoukas is an AP syndicated writer. She is the founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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  1. Um- YUM! Citrus Pea pesto? That is just amazing! Sorry about your weather. I live in CA. I cna’t relate, but I always wish we had cold, rainy weather. :)

  2. Ew, ew, ew!! To the weather, not to your pesto. To the pesto – yum! And I love that it doesn’t have pinenuts in it:)

  3. Cold weather is no fun (well… not much fun), but at least the hubs and I have already planned to have a fire tonight. Bring on the red wine and the fire – I haven’t been this pumped for a Friday night in for quite a while!

  4. Thanks for the b-day shout out!

    Hope to see you soon…. get to go freeze my butt of at the race track and drive around in miserable rainy weather tomorrow… ugh!

  5. Ahhh love it!! Keep coming up with these tasty things please, so that I don’t have to think AT ALL this winter… just head on over here copy, paste, cook, repeat! :)

  6. EMBRACE IT!! NY is one of the most beautiful states in the winter. You doubt me? Go to Saratoga Springs in January. so so so beautiful, just like that pesto! HOLLA!

  7. I’m totally going to try this. It looks awesome.

    If we have another winter like last year, I’m going to murder someone. Probably myself.

  8. I’m sure plenty of people will disagree with me but I’ll take snow and cold over heat and humidity any day. I love bundling up with blankets at home or a big coat/scarf/mittens/hat when I go outside. Plus I think the snow is so pretty. I suppose that is why I love living in MN — we get tons of snow!

    Your pesto sounds delicious! And I love the pretty green color.

    1. I’m with ya Holly! I hate heat and humidity. You can always put more layers on… only so much you can take off without risk of being arrested ;)

    1. I’m actually from NY, lived here until I was 24 but then lived in FL (west palm beach area) for 2.5 yrs until we moved back.

      1. Oh awesome! I’m from Miami, but currently living in Orlando. I’ve been to WPB a few times and it’s beautiful!