Pesto Potatoes are a surefire dinner favorite because these mashed potatoes are lightened with fat free cream cheese and a homemade, lower fat pesto featuring basil and spinach.

Pesto Potatoes Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 20 min
Ready In: 45 min

Servings: 8

2 lb medium yellow fleshed Potatoes
1 cup firmly packed fresh Basil Leaves
½ cup torn fresh Spinach Leaves
¼ cup grated Parmesan Cheese
¼ cup Pine Nuts or Almonds
2 small Cloves Garlic, quartered
¼ tsp Salt (optional)
2 tbsp Olive Oil
2 tbsp Water
4 oz fat free Cream Cheese (1/2 of an 8 oz package)
1 dash Salt and fresh Ground Black Pepper, to taste
2½ tbsp Fat-free Milk

Peel and quarter potatoes. Cook, covered, in a small amount of boiling lightly salted water for 15 to 20 minutes or until tender; drain.
Meanwhile, for pesto, in a food processor bowl combine basil, spinach, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts or almonds, garlic, and, if desired, 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cover and process with several on-off turns until a paste forms, stopping the machine several times and scraping down the sides. With machine running, gradually add oil and water. Process to the consistency of soft butter.
Mash warm potatoes with a potato masher or an electric mixer on low speed. Add cream cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Gradually beat in enough milk to make potatoes light and fluffy. Top each serving with 1 teaspoon of the pesto. Cover and chill or freeze remaining pesto for another use.

Tips & Notes
Pesto can be made ahead of when you need it. Make the pesto, cover and chill for up to two days before you need it. It also will keep packed in an airtight container and in the freezer for a month.
Pesto is a sauce originating in Genoa in northern Italy and traditionally consists of crushed garlic, basil and European pine nuts blended with olive oil, Parmesan cheese and a cheese made from sheep’s milk.
Pesto is traditionally prepared in a marble mortar with a wooden pestle. First, garlic and pine nuts are placed in the mortar and reduced to a cream, then the washed and dried basil leaves are added with coarse salt and ground to a creamy consistency. Only then is a mix of Parmigiano-Reggiano and the sheep cheese added. To help incorporate the cheese a little extra-virgin olive oil is added.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (¾ cup)
Calories: 134
Total Fat: 2g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 3mg
Sodium: 45mg
Total Carbohydrates: 24g
Dietary Fiber: 2g
Protein: 5g


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Filed under: Recipes for Diabetics

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