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5 from 1 vote

Spring Nettle Breakfast Bowl with Pesto

Course: Breakfast
Servings: 1 bowl
Author: Christiann Koepke


Bowl Base

  • 693 g 3 cups filtered water
  • 265 g 1 1/2 cups quinoa, rinsed 
  • 2, 3 minute poached eggs


  • 47 g cooked 2-3 large, raw "tongfuls" of stinging nettle leaves, de-stemmed* (if measuring with stems, then 3-5 tongfuls)
  • 69 g 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice fresh squeezed
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • pepper

Bowl Assembly (1 portion)

  • 2/3 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup or small handful of purple kale  sautéed and steamed
  • 1 sweet potato 6-10 wedges per bowl
  • 1/2 avocado 
  • 1-2 poached eggs
  • 1-3 small roasted carrots
  • 2 tablespoons spring onion or any variety, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons nettle pesto or more if you like!
  • olive oil 
  • sea salt
  • pepper

Optional Garnishes

  • pea shoots
  • sprinkle of lemon juice
  • black sesame seeds


To prepare quinoa

  • For bowl base, start by boiling 3 cups of water. Add rinsed quinoa, stir and cover, lower to a simmer. Cook until tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Fluff with a fork, set aside.
  • *Note: You will have leftover quinoa from this recipe, enjoy!

To prepare nettles for pesto

  • Wear protective gloves and remove nettle leaves from stalks using tongs and scissors, being extremely careful not to touch the nettles. In a medium saucepan, bring water to boil. Rinse nettle leaves thoroughly in water and then place in boiling water for 3-5 minutes, or until leaves have wilted. Remove from water and measure out to approximately 47 grams in weight when cooked. *Note: leaves will be wet from just coming out of the water, try to get rid of excess water before weighing).

To prepare pesto

  • In a blender, add nettles, oil, avocado, garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Puree until smooth. Store in mason jar.
  • *Note: keeps for up to 10 days in fridge when stored in airtight container. Enjoy on and in everything!!

To poach eggs

  • Fill small saucepan 2/3rds full of water. Boil on high heat, and lower to maintain a simmer. Add 1-2 teaspoons apple cider, stir. Crack egg into a 1/3 cup measuring cup. Stir water with wooden spoon to create a gentle whirlpool effect. As the water is spinning, gently drop in egg. Start timer for 3 minutes. Remove from water with a slotted spoon, allow excess water to drip, and then place on side plate until ready for bowl assembly.
  • *Note: To learn more about poaching eggs, see this article.

To prepare sweet potatoes and carrots

  • To prepare roasted veggies, rinse, cut ends and place on baking sheet. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Drizzle vegetables with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Place pan(s) in oven and roast for 30-35 minutes or until soft and golden brown.

To prepare kale

  • Rinse and tear into pieces. Warm cast iron or similar skillet on medium heat. Toss in kale, drizzle lightly in olive oil, stir with spoon and sautéed for 1 minute. Add a splash of water (about 1 tablespoon), cover immediately and steam for 30 seconds. Remove from heat immediately and set aside.

To assemble bowl

  • Add quinoa first, top with pesto and stir with spoon. Layer in all toppings and optional garnishes. Finish by drizzling with olive oil, salt and pepper. Serve warm.


I definitely encourage doubling or tripling this recipe (with exception of quinoa, you will already have extra!) so you can make several bowls at once. Store in fridge in individual containers for meals on the go, poaching an egg last minute so it’s fresh.