Avocado Pesto Melt
with artichoke-spinach pesto / apple cucumber salad
Bright green artichoke-spinach pesto makes these open-faced sandwiches feel elevated. This is a classic Cook Smarts meal last featured way back in 2014.
Smarts: If you're using marinated artichokes in oil, reserve some of the oil and use it to add to the pesto instead of olive oil. You’ll get more flavor this way.
- Avocados - 1, sliced
- English muffins - 4
- Artichoke-spinach pesto (ingredients listed separately) - ~2 cups
- Cheese, provolone - 4 slices (sub Swiss or cheddar)
- Walnuts - 1/4 cup
- Artichoke hearts - 8, drained and rinsed
- Baby spinach - 2 oz
- Garlic - 1 clove, peeled
- Oil, olive - 2 Tbsp
- Salt - 1/2 tsp
- Black pepper - 1/4 tsp
- Vinegar, apple cider - 1/2 Tbsp
- Mustard, Dijon - 2 tsp
- Oil, olive - 3 Tbsp
- Cucumbers - 6 oz, chopped (use a seedless variety if available)
- Apples - 1, chopped
- Baby spinach - 5 oz
Toast walnuts - (This step is optional; skip if you toasted the walnuts on Tuesday.) If you’d like the walnuts toasted, spread them out on a sheet pan and roast in a 400F / 204C oven until fragrant, 5 to 7 minutes, shaking the pan halfway through cooking. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
Make pesto - Combine walnuts, artichoke hearts, spinach (portion for pesto), garlic, olive oil (portion for pesto), salt, and pepper in a food processor. Pulse until thickened, adding some water if needed to help it blend. Add more salt and pepper if needed. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
Make dressing - Whisk together vinegar, mustard, and olive oil (portion for salad). Season with some salt and pepper. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
Turn on the oven’s broiler and place a rack about 6” / 15 cm below the heat source.
Open up English muffins and spread them out, cut-side up on a sheet pan. Broil for a few minutes just to crisp them up.
Remove English muffins from the oven and divide pesto between them. Top with avocado and then cheese (tear slices to fit over the toppings).
Return pan to the oven and continue broiling until cheese is melted and bubbly, 4 to 6 minutes more.
While melts are cooking, toss together cucumbers, apples, and spinach (portion for salad). Add dressing until salad is dressed to your liking.
Serve avocado melts with salad on the side. Enjoy!
Yummmmm... and so easy. We used our homemade basil pesto and it was delish.0 Helpful
Was a hit with the family and easy to put together!0 Helpful
Easy to put together for a weeknight meal!0 Helpful
Quick and easy - used store bought pesto - just need to remember to add the greens to the cart. Added pecans to the salad.0 Helpful
Big hit!0 Helpful
The melts tasted SO creamy and indulgent, probably thanks to the massive amount of pesto! (I didn't even like the pesto that much by itself - probably overdid the baby spinach a little - but everything tasted fantastic put together.) We subbed shredded Swiss/Gruyere cheese with no issues.0 Helpful