Lemony, herby artichoke pesto dip is great any time of year when friends gather to celebrate or watch the games. Its quick to make, ready to serve with a platter of raw veggies to chase away growling stomachs and keep your energy up. When I got home from the gym today, I needed a snack and it was great to have a container of this waiting along with a bag of pre-cut vegetables.
Artichoke Pesto Dip and How to Serve It
Pesto is one of my favorite sauces, and here it becomes a dip. The flavors are fresh and the ingredients can be played around with for lots of tasty variations. This artichoke pesto dip is a riff on traditional pesto. I created it for serving at a couple parties and thought you’d enjoy it for your your family and party needs. It whips up quickly in the food processor and can be made 3-4 days ahead of time so when you’re hungry you’ve got a healthy go-to snack.
Water-packed artichoke hearts are the base for this dip. Add lots of fresh chopped parsley and a little fresh tarragon. If you can’t find fresh tarragon, chervil or basil work as substitute, but find tarragon if you can. The dip gets lots of crunch from walnuts and pine nuts, and brightness from fresh lemon zest and juice. This batch I finished with grated Parmesan cheese, but it can be made without for dairy-free. See the notes below. Recently I made this and wanted more lemon flavor, but not more juice to thin it down, so I used drops of lemon essential oil. Worked great.
For your raw veggies, go for lots of color: red and yellow bell peppers, carrots, green baby zucchini split in half or the larger ones sliced into “chips”, endive leaves, sliced Persian cucumbers, raw broccoli stems trimmed into bite sized pieces or my favorite, munchie, raw sugar snap peas.
If you and dairy don’t agree, simply leave out the Parmesan cheese. This dip is delicious either way. For a Parmesan substitute, try my dairy free cheesy sprinkle. Substituting the cheese also makes it vegan.
Artichoke Pesto Dip
- Food Processor
- 1 14 ounce can artichoke hearts, drained water-packed or frozen, thawed
- 1 cup fresh parsley leaves 1 bunch, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts 2 1/2 ounces
- 1/2 cup pine nuts 2 1/2 ounces
- 1 lemon zested and juiced
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped tarragon, chervil or basil
- 2 large cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese omit for non-dairy, see note for substitution
Optional Essential Oils
- 3-4 drops lemon essential oil for more lemon flavor
- Drain artichokes and squeeze dry to remove excess water. Add all ingredients to a food processor and puree until as smooth as you desire. For a creamier dip, add a tablespoon or two of water.