Beans don’t get the credit they deserve. They’re underdogs, often forgotten and underestimated. People think beans are boring, failing to see them as the blank canvases they truly are. But contrary to popular believe, beans are a super food. They’re delicious, nutritious, and incredibly versatile. No matter how you make ’em, beans are delicious.
So what do you do with the little guys? The better question is what don’t you do with them? There are so many delicious beanibilities (bean possibilities) from Ultimate Vegetarian Tacos to Kale & Bean Soup to Cheddar Jack Bean Dip. Beans are also great for veggie burgers, salad toppers, nachos, and more. Did you know you can even use ’em in pesto?
Yep, that’s right. My Spinach-Bean Pesto is the perfect hearty topper for a personal pizza. It’s flavorful, delicious, and not to mention it’s twice as healthy and filling as typical pesto. Fresh spinach provides that iconic green color, while also giving added nutrients. Then fresh garlic, basil, and grated parmesan add some serious flavor. The beans themselves add heartiness and protein. Then finally, veggie stock holds it together and makes it smooth like olive oil would in a traditional pesto. But this ain’t no traditional pesto; it’s a healthier, heartier, tastier version.
So don’t be fooled by the word “pesto.” This spread will fill you right up! It gets smoothed over a whole wheat pita and topped with shredded parmesan cheese. Then the whole thing is baked to create a crisp pita crust and warm, melty topping. Thanks to the beans, the pesto is creamy and thick. It’s unlike any pesto you’ve had before, and it is a refreshing change for sure.
Stop passing by the beans in the grocery store. Grab a can so you can enjoy this flavorful, filling, and nutritious meal in a matter of minutes.
A Few Tips Before You Get Cooking:
- Although I use spinach as my green of choice, just about any green will do. I’ve made it with kale before, which is tasty as well.
- You can use mozzarella cheese instead of parmesan on top if you like.
- You don’t have to use the beans I used. Pick your favorite beans.
- This is a great weeknight family meal. The recipe is written for a single serving, but you can easily quadruple it to make multiple pizzas.
Personal Spinach-Bean Pesto Pizza
By The Smart Cookie Cook
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tsp. fresh chopped basil
- 1/4 cup kidney beans
- 1/4 cup chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
- 1/2 cup fresh spinach
- 2 tsp. grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- dash pepper
- 2 tbsp. vegetable stock
- 1 60-calorie whole-wheat pita (like the kind by Joseph’s)
- 2 tbsp. shredded parmesan cheese
- In a food processor, pulse the garlic until minced. Add the beans, basil, spinach, grated cheese, salt, and pepper and pulse until well combined and completely pureed. Pour in the veggie stock while continuously processing until the pesto is smooth.
- Line a baking sheet that’s small enough to fit in your toaster with aluminum foil. Spray with nonstick cooking spray. Place the pita on the tray and spread the pesto evenly over the pita. Sprinkle with cheese. Toast the pizza at 450 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted and the pita is browning around the edges. Slice and enjoy.