Homemade Stinging Nettle Pesto Pasta

Earthy, nutrient-dense, homemade stinging nettle pesto – how to get it from the forest to your dinner table in minutes!

Stinging nettle is a superfood, packed full of calcium, vitamins A and C, manganese, iron, and potassium. It tastes a bit like spinach, and its abundantly available in almost every corner of the country. After you harvest stinging nettle, I highly suggest whipping up some of this amazing pesto!

You can read more about the amazing qualities of stinging nettle and how to forage it here.

There’s a recipe for stinging nettle pasta noodles here, too. Add some chicken and make it a meal 🙂


  • 8 oz linguine- (or any pasta,  I like making my own stinging nettle pasta)
  • 3– 4 cups raw stinging nettles
  • 2 1/2 medium garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted- reserving 1 T for garnish
  • 1/4 cup good quality extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp Kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground pepper (white or black)
  • ¼ C Parmesan cheese, finely grated -reserving 1 T for garnish
  • 1 T lemon zest -for garnish


  1. Bring salted water to boil in a pot large enough to hold nettles and stems. Once boiling, using tongs, place the nettles in the pot. Blanch in rapidly boiling water for 1-2 minutes. Using tongs, remove from water and place in ice water bath, to chill rapidly. Separate leaves from bigger stems, placing all leaves and some of the smaller stems on a clean kitchen towel. Wring dry. You should have just about 1 cup of nettles.
  2. Place them in a food processor with the pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice, cheese, salt, pepper and oil. Pulse until uniform, but not too smooth. Scrape the sides to make sure it is well combined.
  3. Boil pasta in salted water. Often I’ll just re-use the nettle water over again (whatever you prefer). Once pasta is cooked to al dente, remove with tongs and immediately toss with the pesto. Taste and adjust salt and lemon. Add chili flakes if you would like.
  4. Garnish with lemon zest (important), pine nuts, and grated Parmesan, serve immediately.

Enjoy! If you make this recipe, take a photo and tag us on instagram @foragenourishflourish

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