Basil Pesto

Pesto is one of those very versatile foods that can be used for and on many foods such as pasta, salads, spread on bread, in sauces for more flavor, on pizza for the sauce and many others. This is why it’s great to have a good simple pesto recipe for just about any occasion! This Basil Pesto is just one version that can liven up many foods.

Serves 10
Time required 5 minutes
Difficulty level 2
Cost of ingredients 2 USD

2 cups fresh basil leaves
3 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons pine nuts
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
Ground black pepper to taste

If using a food processor combine basil, garlic and pine nuts and turn on the machine.  While machine is going, add in oil in a stream until the pesto is smooth. If the pesto seems dry, add in a bit more oil.

If a food processor is unavailable use a pestle and mortar to grind the ingredients together. If a pestle and mortar aren’t available, chop the ingredients very finely and using the back of the knife, press the garlic, basil and pine nuts onto a cutting board and make them into a paste. Then add to a bowl and mix in the olive oil.

After the basil, garlic, pine nuts and oil are well mixed add in Parmesan cheese (omit if wanting either vegan or dairy free) and black pepper. Pour a bit of oil on top of the pesto and refrigerate for later.

Also remember a little goes a long way with Pesto so just this little bit can last for a few dishes!

Photo by Miriam kato.

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This post was written by:

Rochelle - who has written 324 posts on Made in Kitchen Blog.

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10 Responses to “Basil Pesto”

  1. Bonnie Says:

    I have started growing my own Basil. This is a great recipe to use it with with when it is grown.

  2. Dot Says:

    I grow my own basil in the summer and always have much more than I can use. Can you make pesto and freeze it for the winter. IF you can how long would it be good in the freezer. Next summer I will be sure to try your recipe.

  3. Rochelle Says:

    I can’t wait to grow my own. I know that if it’s not used quickly, that it will flower and that’s not the best for taste. So recipes like this one help out with the excess!

  4. Rochelle Says:

    You can freeze it. A good way to do that into smaller portion sizes is in an ice cube tray and then put the ice cubes, when frozen, into a plastic bag to keep in the freezer. But don’t freeze the cheese in the pesto, keep that part fresh!

    As for how long does it last in the refrigerator, I’ve read it should last about 1 week. The extra oil on top helps to keep it from turning brown (but is still edible as long as it’s stored properly). In the freezer, I’ve heard anywhere from 1-2 months, to over a year, but as long as it’s kept at 0 F it will keep safe for however long you need it. I would suggest to be on the safe side and try to use it as fresh as possible!

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