Yesterday I had my first taste of sorrel. I don’t know why it took me so long to try it, but now I’m glad that I have. Encouraged by the friendly produce manager at my local health food store, I tore off a nibble and popped it in my mouth. I was so surprised by what it tasted like.

Sorrel Pesto made from sorrel leaves, feta and pumpkin seeds

Why We Love This Recipe For Sorrel Pesto

When I first tastes sorrel, I assumed it would be more like arugula or spinach, but it wasn’t at all. It was really sour! It was powerfully so. Yup, a green that is as sour as citrus! Bizarre and intriguing.

Then I started wondering what it was that made it so sour. It is high in something called oxalic acid, which is also found in rhubarb. I wasn’t that surprised to find out that sorrel is high in vitamins too.

I figured an easy way to prepare it would be to make a pesto of sorts. Instead of basil like in my 5-Minute Classic Basil Pesto, I’d use the sorrel. Plus I used pumpkin seeds (instead of pine nuts) and salty feta to balance the acidity of the greens.

It only took me a few minutes, and the results were delicious. I made these little crostinis by dolloping the pesto on slices of fresh seeded baguette and garnishing with more crumbled feta and pumpkin seeds. 

I thought they would be a fun appetizer for a graduation party or baby shower. Or it can be tossed with pasta and veggies for a springtime dinner.

 

Sorrel in a jar of water

Key Ingredients For This Recipe

Sorrel leaves

Sorrel leaves are a leafy green plant that can be used as an herb or as a salad green. They have a very sour or citrusy flavor, and its name stems for the word sur, meaning sour in German and Scandinavian countries. If you’re not able to find sorrel, you can substitute with spinach and a little lemon juice, as leafy fresh spinach can also taste acidic.

Pumpkin seeds (pepitas)

Pumpkin seeds, also known as pepitas, can come from several varieties of pumpkins or squash. You can find pepitas in most large grocery stores near the other nuts and seeds. If you aren’t able to find them, you can use sunflower seeds instead. The non-salted pepitas (and other seeds) are best for this recipe.

Feta cheese, preferably goat feta

Although I chose to use goat feta for this recipes, feel free to use regular sheep’s milk feta if you’d like. All in all, they have the same nutritional value, except goat feta has slightly more protein. You should be able to find goat feta in the fancier cheese section of most grocery stores.

Additional Ingredients

  • 1 small clove garlic, peeled
  • ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Step by Step Instructions to Make This Pesto

Fit a food processor with the steel blade attachment. Drop garlic through feed tube with the motor running and process until minced.

Remove the lid and add sorrel, pumpkin seeds, feta, olive oil and salt. Process until a thick paste forms.

Serve immediately or store in the fridge for later use.

FAQs and Expert Tips

How long can I keep homemade pesto in the fridge?

As long as it’s stored in an airtight container in the fridge, homemade pesto will stay fresh for up to 5 days.

What if I don’t have a food processor?

If you don’t have a food processor, you can use a regular blender or even make it by hand (although will be more difficult). In that case, you’d need a morter and pestle to crush and break down the sorrel leaves.

Can you freeze ready made pesto?

Pesto freezes really well. You can freeze single servings of pesto in ice cube trays, then transfer over to a sealable plastic bag. Freeze for up to 6 months.

Additional Recipes

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Sorrel Pesto made from sorrel leaves, feta and pumpkin seeds

Sorrel Pesto

  • Author: Katie Webster
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 1/3 cup 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Small Appliance
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Pesto made from sorrel leaves, pumpkin seeds and feta.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 small clove garlic, peeled
  • 3 cups chopped sorrel leaves (about 3 ½ ounces)
  • ½ cup pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese, preferably goat feta
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. Fit food processor with the steel blade attachment. Drop garlic through feed tube with motor running and process until minced. Remove lid and add sorrel, pumpkin seeds, feta, olive oil and salt. Process until a thick paste.

Notes

3 mg Cholesterol, 0 g Added Sugars

Alternative Directions:

If you don’t have a food processor, you can use a regular blender or even make it by hand (although will be more difficult). In that case, you’d need a morter and pestle to crush and break down the sorrel leaves.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2 tablespoons
  • Calories: 42
  • Sugar: 0 g
  • Sodium: 96 mg
  • Fat: 4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 0.5 g
  • Fiber: 0 g
  • Protein: 1 g