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Ever have extra parsley laying around? Turn it into this simple, fresh and healthy Lemon-Pepper Parsley Pesto to avoid wasting it! This Lemon-Pepper Parsley Pesto is dairy free, with no cheese added and is really simple to make. It is as versatile as classic basil pesto and can be used in many ways. It adds a super fresh flavor and the great thing is that it can be frozen for later use.
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5 from 10 votes

Lemon-Pepper Parsley Pesto

Lemon-Pepper Parsley Pesto is a simple way to use up extra parsley. It’s like a sophisticated version of lemon-pepper seasoning and can be used in all the same ways you would traditional basil pesto.
Author: Laura Marzen, RD


  • 1 cup packed fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon finely shredded lemon peel
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil


  • In a small food processor combine parsley and walnuts. Cover and process until finely chopped. Add garlic, lemon peel, lemon juice, salt, black pepper, and, if desired, cayenne pepper. Process until combined. Add oil; cover and process until well combined and nearly smooth, scraping sides of bowl as needed.
  • Use immediately or transfer pesto to a bowl and cover the surface of the pesto with plastic wrap. Chill up to 2 days.


Yield: ½ cup (8, 1-tablespoon servings)
Nutrition Info (per serving): 61 cals, 1 g pro, 1 g carb, 6 g fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 1 g sat fat, 0 g fiber, 78 mg sodium