Nutrition Education

We hosted a cooking class for students at Cristo Rey San Jose Jesuit High School

Nutrition Education

A great way to get the kids excited about cooking is by sharing cool facts about their favorite dishes! Led by our Regional Chef Nate Lopez, Revolution Foods recently had the opportunity to host a cooking class with students from Cristo Rey San Jose Jesuit High School. During the class, Chef Nate not only taught them how to create a spinach pesto recipe, but also shared with them the original pesto recipe dating back to the early 1800s. The students had fun preparing the dish while learning historical facts about this famous sauce.

Here are some interesting facts that you can share while making Chef Nate’s Spinach Pesto recipe with your kids:

  • Pesto has very ancient origins, dating back to the mid-nineteenth century.
  • The name pesto originates from the Genoese word pestâ, which means to pound or to crush. This refers to the way in which the authentic sauce is prepared, with a mortar and pestle.
  • Italy’s Liguria in Europe is the original home of pesto, although Ancient Romans made a similar condiment with different herbs, named moretum.

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make Spinach Pesto:

  • ¾ cup olive oil
  • 3 cups packed spinach leaves
  • 3 cups packed basil leaves
  • ¼ cup toasted sunflower seeds
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, peeled
  • Juice from one lemon
  • ¼ cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper


  1. Be sure to wash and dry all produce well.  Pick leaves off of basil stem until you reach 3 cups.
  2. Place spinach, basil, sunflower seeds, garlic, and cheese in a food processor or blender, then pulse on high 4-5 times.
  3. Scrape sides with a rubber spatula and add lemon juice, then blend on medium.
  4. Slowly drizzle oil into the processor while it is running. Be careful not to get your fingers too close.
  5. Season with salt and pepper. Turn off the processor and give it a taste! Add more salt, pepper or lemon juice to your preference.
  6. Remember, you can always add seasoning, but you can’t take it away.  Always taste as you go!

Spinach Pesto

Chef Nate’s tip:

If your food ends up tasting a little too salty, adding an acid such as lemon juice or vinegar can help balance the flavor!

If you’re looking for more fun recipes that you can make with your kids, we recommend this delicious overnight oats recipe that’s ready in under 10 minutes or these refreshing feel-good pops that are packed with nutrients.