Apparently creamy pesto is a ‘thing’ here in Manhattan.  Especially in the Spring when all the fresh green veggies start popping up.

Right now, they’re on every street corner stretching from Wall Street to the Upper East Side and though I have yet to experience them in all their creamy pesto glory, I took it upon myself to create a fun lil’ red rice pesto recipe.

I’ve always made pesto using basil and oil but this time around I opted for a spin on the classic green mushy-looking pesto.

I tossed in a bit of fresh bushy broccoli, yogurt and asparagus.

Along with a touch of freshly squeezed lemon juice.

And so I bought a nice head of asparagus – so fresh n’ crisp and got to work.  After coming to the conclusion this pesto wasn’t gunna taste anything like a traditional pesto – I went wild.

Well, as wild as one can get with a food processor.

Turns out, my asparagus version came out super tasty and sweet…not like any other pesto I’ve ever tasted.  It’s rather Spring-like with a touch of creaminess from the yogurt revealing the soft and vibrant pesto.

I served it mixed with red rice. Which is SO pretty.

Why do we not make more red rice?

Notice how everybody talks about the white n’ the brown…but not the poor ol’ red.

Well, welcome in Red Rice – it’s so ruby red that it stands out in any dish.

It kinda gives off that ‘Eat Me’ vibe.

Doesn’t it?

I’d serve this pesto alongside veggies, gluten-free crackers or atop toast.  Heck, I’d even plop it on salads and grilled veggies.

But let me tell ‘ya- when mixed with this red rice- it’s a winner.

And perfect for a Memorial Day BBQ.  Right?


Creamy Asparagus Red Rice Pesto
Serves: 6
Gluten-Free and Vegan
Author: Amie
Recipe type: Entree



  1. Cook red rice according to package instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, steam the broccoli and asparagus. Bring 1 cup water to a boil in a large pot. Add broccoli and asparagus in batches, cover and cook for 1 minute or until bright green and crunchy. Drain broccoli and asparagus in a colander and run under cold water to stop the cooking process. Repeat with remaining broccoli and asparagus. Set aside.
  3. To make the pesto: combine cooked broccoli, asparagus, garlic, pine nuts, sea salt, pepper and lemon juice in a food processor. Drizzle in olive oil and yogurt; pulse until smooth.
  4. Toss cooked red rice with the pesto mixture. Thin with warm water for desired consistency.
  5. Serve topped with additional pine nuts, diced yellow bell pepper and chives.
Nutrition Facts
Creamy Asparagus Red Rice Pesto
Amount Per Serving
Calories 403 Calories from Fat 171
% Daily Value*
Fat 19g29%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Cholesterol 1mg0%
Sodium 265mg12%
Potassium 487mg14%
Carbohydrates 47g16%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 11g22%
Vitamin A 820IU16%
Vitamin C 70.9mg86%
Calcium 90mg9%
Iron 3.2mg18%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Easy recipe


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