Condiment/ Poultry

Chicken Skewers with Dandelion Pesto

Chicken Skewers with Dandelion Pesto

Chicken Skewers with Dandelion Pesto

I remember my father used to spend hours to digging out dandelions by the root and I always thought of them as one of the most ‘annoying’ weeds that find a way to spread in your yard. Then I came across them in the grocery story and decided it was time to experiment with different ways to prepare and use them. Dandelion greens are the most nutritious leafy vegetable that you can buy, slightly bitter and earthy. Cultivated dandelion greens from the store are less bitter than the wild ones, but in both cases taste great when properly prepared. Blanching them first for few minutes will help to get rid of some of the bitterness. Pairing them with salty Parmesan cheese, nuts and red wine vinegar will compliment the taste. Divide any pesto leftovers into portions and keep in on hand in the freezer. I served these chicken skewers with wild rice and a side of garden salad. This pesto is also great with pasta, scramble eggs or flat bread.

Chicken Skewers with Dandelion Pesto

Chicken Skewers with Dandelion Pesto

Similar recipe: Pasta with Spinach Pesto and Bacon Bites

Chicken Skewers with Dandelion Pesto

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 40 min
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


Pesto: makes ~ 1/3/4 cup

  • 1 bunch fresh dandelion greens (~6 oz ), tough lower stems discarded (you can also use collard greens if you don’t have access to dandelion greens)
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 large garlic clove, grated
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup peanuts, toasted and roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of red pepper flakes

Chicken Skewers

  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 2-inch cubes
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. To make pesto: Bring a large pot of water to boil. Fill a large bowl with ice cubes and cold water.
    Boil the dandelion greens for 3 minutes. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, transfer the dandelion greens into the ice water. After couple of minutes, drain the greens in a colander, then squeeze it to press out excess water.
  2. Put greens and the remaining pesto ingredients in a food processor and puree until smooth. Transfer to a container, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. The pesto will keep for up to 3 days. Freeze any leftovers (divide into portions first) to use in pasta dishes, scramble eggs and flat bread.
  3. To make chicken skewers: Preheat grill on high heat. Thread 4-5 pieces of chicken onto each skewer. Season with salt and pepper. Place the skewers on the grill and cook for 8-10 minutes, turning frequently until done.
  4. The chicken is done when the juice that runs out is yellow rather than pink. Remove the chicken from the grill and place it on the plate.
  5. Top it with the dandelion pesto. Remove the chicken from the skewers.
    Serve immediately with fresh garden salad.

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  • Reply
    May 31, 2015 at 2:48 pm

    Wonderful, I love the pesto, you are so talented and creative.

  • Reply
    chef mimi
    June 1, 2015 at 5:39 am

    Well I’ll be darned! And I thought I’d created just about every single possible pesto in the world! Dandelions! Brilliant!

    • Reply
      June 1, 2015 at 12:12 pm

      I wanted to try them for a long time… They are surprisingly tasty!

  • Reply
    Dana Fashina
    June 1, 2015 at 7:47 am

    I’ve never played with Dandelions before but this recipe really makes me want to.
    Genius making a pesto out of them too 🙂

    • Reply
      June 1, 2015 at 12:15 pm

      It’s my first time but I was pretty happy! They are a little bit bitter but in a good way:) thanks!!!

  • Reply
    Lynn | The Road to Honey
    June 1, 2015 at 12:08 pm

    I had fond memories of dandelions growing up as we used to string them together and fashion them into princess crowns and necklaces. We also loved to rub their buttery yellow bloom against our clothes, leaving behind bright yellow streaks (I’m sure my mother was thrilled with this). I’ve never actually cooked with dandelions but will need to keep my eye out for them at the grocery stores (we don’t have much grass here in the city. . .so I won’t be able to harvest my own). I love how the dandelion pesto really dresses up these chicken skewers (which look amazing btw).

    • Reply
      June 1, 2015 at 6:24 pm

      Thanks Lynn! I bought mine in a grocery store:) I think they are becoming more and more popular. Pretty much every grocery store in my area sell them now. I like to experiment with new veggies or fruits! Thanks for stopping by:)

  • Reply
    Food from Michelle's kitchen
    June 2, 2015 at 12:13 am

    How extraordinary that you can buy dandelions in the grocery store! I’m still yet to try them. I’m curious. I love this idea of using them as a pesto.

    • Reply
      June 2, 2015 at 4:26 pm

      I think they are becoming more and more popular. They always available in my local grocery store. It’s nice to try something new a different:)

  • Reply
    Bonnie Eng
    June 3, 2015 at 12:57 am

    Fascinating! I saw dandelion greens at the market the other day but didn’t buy because I had no idea how to use them. I’ll buy them tomorrow so that I can make these…yum!

  • Reply
    June 3, 2015 at 9:34 pm

    Mamma mia Olga, this is a wonderful idea! I have to try this recipe next month when I go to see my mom- I hope to find dandelion there! Xx

  • Reply
    25 Healthy Skewer Recipes for the Grill |
    June 15, 2015 at 6:00 am

    […] Chicken skewers with dandelion pesto by Ocean View Kitchen. Have you tried dandelion pesto before? It’s really nutritious, and it […]

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