Time 10 min.

Serves 6

Green beans are high in folate, which is essential to the functioning of the central nervous system. Eat them, along with the other staples of a Mediterranean Diet—fatty fish, whole grains, nuts, fruits and vegetables—to support a healthy brain.


  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 lb green beans, stems trimmed
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice


  1. Combine basil, garlic, pine nuts, Parmesan, salt and pepper in a food processor and pulse into a paste. Add oil and pulse another 30 seconds.
  2. Boil a large pot of water. Blanch beans for 1 minute or until just crisp-tender and drain.
  3. Toss green beans, pesto and lemon juice in a serving bowl.

Nutrition Per Serving: 158 calories, 4 g protein, 6 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 14 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 3 mg cholesterol, 444 mg sodium

Publication Review By: the Editorial Staff at Healthcommunities.com

Published: 23 Sep 2011

Last Modified: 25 Mar 2015