28 Seasonal Favorites + Carrot Top Pesto

Your ultimate resource for carrot, brussels sprout, mushroom, sweet potato, and kale recipes. AND a carrot top pesto!

Carrot Top Pesto / www.loveandlemons.com

Two things I’m obsessed with: vegetables (no surprise there), and Instagram. I love posting images of pretty vegetables, but I also look to my feed for fresh, colorful veggie inspiration. Which is why I’m excited to participate this week in #urwhatupost – a fruit and vegetable takeover movement by Bolthouse Farms. They’ve created this cool website that shows how many people are tagging healthy vs. unhealthy foods in real time. For example, as I type this, the scale is about 65% junk food, and 35% fresh produce, but today through March 6th, we’re trying to change that.

Things like #icecream (11 million tags) and #pie (14 million tags) are the top two socially shared foods. So here’s the goal: let’s all get together and start sharing gorgeous colorful veggies like #carrots (6 million), #kale (3.9m), #mushrooms (3.5m), #potatoes (7.2m), and #brussels sprouts (56K) and shift the dial this week toward the fresh foods we all love most. All you have to do is simply label your favorite fruits and vegetables as hashtags or keywords in your posts on Instagram and/orTwitter.

Here are 5 of my favorite seasonal vegetables along with some of my favorite recipes. (Also, a recipe for Carrot Top pesto at the bottom – don’t toss those tops!)

Carrot Recipes:
Roasted Carrot Turmeric Soup / Farmhouse Farro Salad / Spiced Carrot & Chickpea Salad / Carrot Muffins with Coconut Whip / Vegan Carrot Cake / Collard Wraps with Carrot Hummus

5 Favorite Veggies: Brussels Sprouts / www.loveandlemons.com

Brussels Sprout Recipes:

Brussels Sprout & Sunchoke Salad / Brussels Sprout, Broccoli & Avocado Rice / Sweet Potato & Brussels Skillet / Shredded Brussels Sprout & Apple Salad

Mushrooms / www.loveandlemons.com

Mushroom Recipes:

Shiitake & Napa Cabbage Gyoza / Creamy Polenta & Mushrooms / Mushroom & Quinoa Lettuce Wraps / Walnut-Mushroom Veggie Burgers / Mushrooms & Wheatberries / Sesame & Shiitake Soba Noodles

Sweet Potatoes / www.loveandlemons.com

Sweet Potato Recipes:

Sweet Potato Vegetarian Chili / Spicy Sweet Potato Tostadas / Healthy Loaded Sweet Potatoes / Sweet Potato Tahini Crostini / Curried Sweet Potato Soup / Sweet Potato Pomegranate Salad

Kale / www.loveandlemons.com

Kale Recipes:

Kale Walnut Pesto / Winter Roasted Kale Salad / Kale Egg & Avocado Toast / Matcha Kale Smoothies / Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Chickpeas & Kale / Butternut Squash, Kale & Quinoa Stew

Also, these fruits & veggies (not pictured in this post) also count toward the cause: #pomegranate, #berry, #potato, #avocado, #grapes, #beets, #vegetable. They can be typed in singular or plural form, with or without the hashtag.

4.7 from 3 reviews

Carrot Top Pesto

Prep time
Total time
  • ⅓ cup toasted walnuts or pine nuts
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped carrot tops (preferably organic)
  • big handful of basil leaves (about 1 cup)
  • juice of ½ small lemon
  • sea salt & freshly ground pepper
  • ¼ - ⅓ cup olive oil
  • optional: pinch of red pepper flakes
  • optional: 1 teaspoon capers
  • optional: ¼ parmesan cheese
  1. In a food processor, pulse together the walnuts and garlic. Add the carrot tops, basil, lemon, salt & pepper. Pulse again, then add ¼ cup olive oil and pulse until combined. (Make it as smooth or as chunky as you like).
  2. Scoop the pesto into a small bowl, and stir in up to ¼ cup more olive oil.
  3. Taste and adjust seasonings and stir in a pinch of red pepper flakes, capers, or parmesan cheese, if you like.
  4. Serve with toasted bread, scoop onto pasta, or dollop into soups.

This post is in partnership with Bolthouse Farms, all words, opinions and images are my own.


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Rate this recipe (after making it):  

  1. Marnie

    Delicious! I didn’t have walnuts or pine nuts so I used macadamia nuts. Also threw a little fresh oregano in since I was already out in the garden grabbing basil. The capers add a nice briney touch! Thank you.

  2. Sue Ann

    Great recipe! Thank you!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you loved it!

  3. Andrea Golombeck

    Interesting idea got to give this a go !

  4. That’s awesome you created a pesto recipe where you don’t have to waste any of the vegetable. I love it! I also love that you have walnuts as a first choice over pine nuts. walnuts are my fave!

  5. I kid you not, yesterday I picked a bunch of carrots out of my garden and I wondered (to myself) if carrot tops were edible. I was thinking of juicing them, but pesto sounds so much more exciting! Thanks for the great recipe!! xx

  6. I am overwhelmed with all these good ideas. But I can vouch for how good the Butternut Squash, Kale, and Quinoa stew is!

  7. matt

    I love this site. Photos are good. Recipes fantastic and healthy. What-s not to like?

  8. I absolutely loathe waste when it comes to foods, but carrot tops are always something I callously throw out. I need to whip this up next time!

  9. I adore cavalo nero – so good! Plus, this carrot top pesto looks like it would be a wonderful addition to roast veg!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.