Recipe | Raw Pumpkin Seed Pesto + Raw Food Resources for Beginners

Raw Pumpkin Seed Pesto
One misconception I always had about raw foods was that it was all either terribly boring or way too involved for me to bother with. I had no interest in schlepping all over town for weird ingredients and buying special equipment online or spending 8 hours sprouting seeds and another 4 hours dehydrating them for an afternoon snack. While these things are definitely true sometimes, I’ve started dabbling a little in eating more raw food and I’ve realized that it’s definitely doable.

So what exactly does raw mean? Although there are varying definitions, it’s usually a vegan diet that consists of food that hasn’t been heated above 104 to 115 degrees. (Different people have different preferences for the temperature.) Because some heating is allowed, dehydration is often used to “cook” raw foods.

I’m not a nutritionist, but the reason I’ve decided to incorporate more raw foods into my diet is because I believe that some foods are healthier when raw, while other foods are healthier when cooked. I’m not looking to go entirely raw, just seeking a little more balance, so I’ve been eating more raw lunches, snacks, and desserts lately. And guess what? I still don’t have any special equipment or strange ingredients. There are lots of beginner-friendly raw recipes out there if you know where to look and, failing that, there are more and more prepared raw foods on the market today. Here are some of the resources I’ve been using:

Ordering Raw Food Online

Triangle Raw Foods // I have to mention my local favorite, Triangle Raw Foods! If you don’t live in the Raleigh/Durham area, you can order their raw protein bars, salad dressings, sprout nut butters, and sweet, sweet candy online.

Abe’s Market // I only wanted to recommend businesses that I’ve personally ordered from, so while there are a lot of raw food stores online, I’m not listing all of them here because I don’t have personal experience ordering from them. But I can vouch for Abe’s, which has a pretty extensive selection of raw diet friendly products. The Pizza Flax Snax they sell are so darn tasty.

Raw Food Books

annelies_raw_food_power_giveaway Annelie’s Raw Food Power by Annelie Whitfield // I received a review copy of this book and I’ve been enjoying it, although there are a lot of recipes in here that require a dehydrator or ingredients I don’t generally have on hand. My favorite recipe from the book, Pumpkin Pesto, is posted below. I toss it with raw vegetable noodles made with julienned yellow squash, zucchini, and carrots–so delicious! (And super easy too.) You can enter to win a copy of Annelie’s Raw Food Power on the Marketplace this month too.

In The Raw: Small Indulgences from The Sweet Life // This ebook by Sarah from The Sweet Life is the second raw cookbook I bought. I am loving raw desserts right now and this book is full of them. There’s also a guide to raw kitchen necessities, which is a great resource.

Practically Raw: Flexible Raw Recipes Anyone Can Make by Amber Shea Crawley // If, like me, you are a dabbler when it comes to this whole raw food thing, this book is for you. Flexible? Anyone can make? Yes, I clearly needed this book.

Going Raw by Judita Wignall // Another raw food book for beginners with lots of information on raw food preparation techniques like dehydration and sprouting.

Raw Food Blogs

Rawmazing // I love Rawmazing for its beautiful photography and unique recipes. Guess what else? Rawmazing has a store! So if you do feel inclined to buy some raw food equipment, you can buy it there.

Choosing Raw // Choosing Raw is a vegan, mostly raw food blog. Raw Peanut Noodles? Yes please!

Chef Amber Shea // Well, I love Practically Raw, so is it a surprise that I love the author’s food blog too? This is another blog that includes some cooked dishes too, but the raw recipes have their own category.

See? Raw food doesn’t have to be intimidating and it can definitely be more interesting than a handful of celery sticks or almonds.

Pumpkin Pesto

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 2 servings

Pumpkin Pesto

Toss this pumpkin seed pesto with uncooked julienned veggies or use it as a spread for raw crackers.

Ingredients

  • 1 c. pumpkin seeds (pepitas), soaked for 2 hours then drained
  • 1/2 c. olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. raw honey
  • 1 c. fresh basil leaves
  • 1 tsp. sea salt

Instructions

  1. Put all the ingredients into a food processor and process until very smooth. (I like my pesto a little chunky, so I kind of ignored the very smooth part.)

Notes

Reprinted with permission from Ivy Press.

http://ohmyveggies.com/recipe-raw-pumpkin-seed-pesto-raw-food-resources-for-beginners/

Disclosure: The links to Amazon in this post are affiliate links, so if you were to make a purchase, I’d receive a small percentage of the sale price.

Kiersten Frase

About Kiersten

Kiersten is the founder and editor of Oh My Veggies. She loves cooking, trashy reality shows, and Hello Kitty. Kiersten also blogs about blogging at kierstenfrase.com.   Read more from Kiersten →

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Comments

  1. says

    This looks fantastic. I love raw foods in general, though I don’t make a huge effort to follow a raw based diet (obviously!!). I recently bought a spiralizer and this recipe makes me want to pull it out and make for all the beautiful zucchini and squash I’ve been seeing!

  2. says

    I have been dabbling in raw food a bit too lately – like you mainly snacks and desserts. So this is such a handy post for me! I’ll definitely have to check out some of those cookbooks – the Practically Raw one sounds right up my alley!

  3. says

    I like making my own pesto so that I can control the amount of oil and other ingredients that go into it (usually I find them too oily)…I’ve never tried using pumpkin seeds in a pesto, but I imagine they would add an interesting dimension to the flavour! Glad to hear you’re getting more into raw food too, hope to see some more raw recipes (that don’t require a dehydrator) on here!

    • Kiersten Frase says

      Yeah, some store-bought pestos are way too oily and cheesy. We used to get a really good locally-made brand in Wisconsin and I miss it. :(

  4. says

    Oh what a pretty dish. I really need to get myself a spiralizer. It’s such a nifty little gadget and I’ve heard people swear by its ability to actually change the taste of raw veggies! Amazing what the mind makes us believe – make a veggie look like pasta and it will taste like pasta :)

    • Kiersten Frase says

      I want one too! It’s on my wish list. :) In the meantime, I’ve been using the julienne setting on my mandoline slicer. It’s not as pretty, but it works in a pinch!

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