Warrigal Greens Dip/Pesto Recipe

by Corinne Mossati

How to make warrigal greens dip or pesto, using all-Australian ingredients including the leaves of warrigal greens, macadamia nuts and sea salt.

Warrigal Greens Pesto

Warrigal Greens Dip – Photo © The Gourmantic Garden

Warrigal Greens (Tetragonia tetragonoides) are also known as Warrigal Spinach, New Zealand Spinach or Botany Bay greens is an Australian bush food commonly found along the coast. The succulent leaves can be used as a substitute for spinach during the hotter month and make a delicious dip or pesto style sauce.

Pesto is an Italian sauce made of basil leaves, garlic, pine nuts, olive oil and cheese, and you can substitute warrigal greens for basil leaves and use with pasta, or as an accompaniment to meats and baked vegetables. I prefer it as a dip to serve with pre-dinner drinks.

The leaves of Warrigal Greens contain oxalic acid which is toxic if consumed in large quantities. Blanching the leaves removes the harmful element and retains the vibrant green colour and succulent texture.

For my Warrigal Greens Dip recipe, I combine the blanched the leaves with macadamia nuts, Australian olive oil, garlic and sea salt to create an all-Australian dip to be enjoyed and shared with friends.

Note: If you’re making it for pesto and not planning on eating it straight away, I prefer not to add cheese to the mix so that it keeps longer in the fridge.

Warrigal Greens Dip / Pesto Recipe

Warrigal Greens Pesto

Warrigal Greens Dip / Pesto – Photo © The Gourmantic Garden


  • 125g warrigal greens
  • 25g macadamia nuts
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • good pinch of sea salt


Step 1 – Blanching

  1. Have a bowl with ice cubes and cold water handy.
  2. In a saucepan, bring water to the boil, add warrigal greens and cook for one minute only.
  3. Quickly strain and add the leaves to the bowl of iced water to stop the cooking process.
  4. Leave for about one minute then strain in a colander and discard the water. The leaves should still be vibrant green in colour.
  5. Lay the warrigal greens on a clean tea towel to dry.

Step 2 – Making the Dip / Pesto

  1. In a food processor, add the blanched warrigal greens, macadamia nuts, garlic clove, a good pinch of salt and blitz.
  2. While the motor is running, slowly add the olive oil until it’s mixed well.
  3. Store in the fridge until use.

Have you tried this recipe? Don’t forget to tag @the.gourmanticgarden on instagram.

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