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basil pesto sauce in a white bowl on a white table
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4.67 from 3 votes

Basil Pesto Recipe

This beautifully bright green homemade pesto recipe is so good you'll want to eat it by the spoonful. Do yourself a favor and make this traditional Italian condiment while your summer garden is still in bloom.
Prep Time15 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Condiment, Dip, Sauce
Cuisine: Italian
Diet: Gluten Free
Servings: 6
Calories: 182kcal
Author: Farrukh Aziz

Ingredients

  • cup Toasted Pine Nuts or Walnuts
  • 3 cloves Garlic I have sliced them
  • 2 cups Fresh Basil
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • ¼ teaspoon Freshly Cracked Pepper
  • ½ tablespoon Lemon Juice
  • cup Parmesan Cheese or Pecorino grated
  • cup Olive Oil you can add 1-2 tablespoons more

Instructions

  • Place the toasted pine nuts (or walnuts), garlic, basil, salt, pepper and lemon juice in to a bowl of immersion blender chopper or food processor. Pulse few times to make a coarse mixture.
  • Now, add grated parmesan, olive oil and pulse everything again until the mixture is well blended but still with some texture (or pulse few more times for smoother pesto if you like).
  • Check for seasoning and adjust if desired. You may add more cheese for sharp flavors.
  • Use it right away to make your favorite dishes or pour a thin layer of oil and cover with a plastic wrap touching the top of the pesto and refrigerate until ready to use. Stores well up to 2 weeks.

Notes

  • No basil? A traditional swap would be parsley or marjoram. You can also opt to use spinach, kale or peppery greens like arugula/watercress for a less traditional (but still delicious) pesto. Rinse and pat dry the herbs or greens well before use.
  • To store: I recommend pressing a piece of plastic wrap down to physically touch the entire surface of the pesto before refrigerating. You can also pour some olive oil over the top, covering the entire surface area of the pesto. Store for up to a week. 
  • To freeze: I recommend freezing into ice cubes so you can pull out the pesto as you need it. Pesto cubes can be frozen for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Calories: 182kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 284mg | Potassium: 80mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 468IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 84mg | Iron: 1mg