Kids in the Kitchen with Girl and Her Kitchen: Kale and Bean Pesto Dip and Other Fun St. Paddy’s Day Foods


Heather loves to get in the kitchen with her kids, and she wants you in the kitchen with your kids too! Kids in the Kitchen with Girl in the Kitchen shares tips, recipes, and ideas to get you and your kids cooking together.

kids in the kitchen

Every year when March rolls around, St. Patrick’s Day is on my mind. It’s automatic. Sort of like February with Valentine’s Day….er…well, I guess it’s like November with Thanksgiving, December, and Christmas, and July and…well you get the picture! Anyways, when March 1st hits, my brain goes into overdrive thinking of all the green food we can possibly cram into seventeen days until we have to start thinking about eggs, chicks, bunnies and a lot of pastel colors.

I have done many of the usual green foods. The lime sherbet floats you see everywhere on Pinterest, green cupcakes, green rice Krispie treats…the list goes on and on. I have also tried a few more healthy foods for the holiday. Have you tried this fruit rainbow? It is all over the place on Pinterest, when I made it for my kids they flipped over how cute it was.

fruit rainbow
© H. Williams | Little Lake | 2015

I also made them these really delicious, but healthy, green muffins and green smoothies too. They loved eating green food, and I loved that it was healthy.

green muffins
© H. Williams | Little Lake | 2015

I also love having some “Irish” foods as well. I have Irish in quotes since I am not really sure if anything is really Irish food or just food that Americans have made Irish for St. Patrick’s Day. I loved putting together an Irish breakfast for the holiday last year for my kids. Eggs, Irish sausage, Irish soda bread, Irish butter, and a fruit rainbow. It was so good and I felt like I hit my holiday “creative mom” quota for the day before 9 a.m.!

Irish Breakfast
© H. Williams | Little Lake | 2015

This year, I really wanted to figure out something a little different, still green, and of course, delicious. I had an idea. I wasn’t sure if it was kid-friendly, but I thought I would give it a try anyway. I gathered the ingredients and got to work. The result: delicious. The kid factor? They helped me make it. Heck, they could have done it without my help-that is how easy it was! When it was ready to be tasted, they were wary. Very wary.

I begged, I pleaded. I won.

The oldest took a cracker and slowly dipped. She chewed. She savored.

She loved it.

The middle child was trickier. She was not going to budge. Finally, I broke her down. She dipped a chip into the creamy dip.


She had it for lunch. She absolutely loved it!

The youngest could not stop dipping carrots in it. He probably didn’t even notice it was green though. He is still at that stage where he really doesn’t question much!

So…a dip that is kid-friendly, delicious, unique and different, and perfect for St. Patrick’s day?

Sounds like we just found our pot of gold.

kale and bean pesto dip recipe

Kale and Bean Pesto Dip Recipe


  • 2 large garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 3 cups kale
  • 3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 2 15 oz cans of white cannellini beans, drained and rinsed


  1. Pulse garlic cloves in a food processor until finely chopped. Add walnuts and pulse until smooth.
  2. Add kale and parmesan. Turn the food processor on and drizzle the olive oil in.
  3. Add the lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, honey, salt, garlic powder, and pepper and pulse until smooth.
  4. Add beans and let it mix in the processor until smooth and creamy.
  5. Adjust taste if necessary with salt, pepper, honey and lemon juice if necessary.
  6. Adjust consistency with olive oil if you need it.
  7. Garnish with extra chopped walnuts and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve with veggies, crackers, chips, toss with pasta or rice or serve as a sauce over chicken.

Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 3 days

kale bean pesto dip
© H. Williams | Little Lake | 2015

Are you crazy like me and go all out with green food this month? Check out Girl and Her Kitchen for a healthy Shamrock shake recipe. Like “I can eat this for breakfast healthy”.

By: Heather Williams

Heather is a busy mom of three who loves exploring Lake County with her kids. When she, her husband, and kids are not embarking on new adventures, you will most likely find her cooking and posting some great family-friendly recipes at Girl and Her Kitchen.

Kids in the Kitchen with Girl and Her Kitchen: Kale and Bean Pesto Dip and Other Fun St. Paddy\'s Day Foods

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