Basil Pesto

Basil Pesto


1 cup


  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 4 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1.5 cloves garlic, peeled, quartered
  • kosher salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Spread pine nuts on rimmed baking sheet; toast in oven until golden and fragrant, tossing occasionally (5-8 minutes). Cool completely.
  2. In food processor, combine pine nuts, basil, Parmesan and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Process until finely chopped. With the machine running, pour olive oil in a steady stream through the feed tube; process until smooth.

Chef’s tip

Herb: substitute fresh mint, arugula or tarragon for basil
Cheese: substitute pecorino, Gruyère, Piave, Grana Padano or aged Cheddar for Parmesan
Nut: substitute walnuts, pistachio, pepitas, almonds, pecans or cashews for pine nuts

Serving Suggestion: 
Crostini: spread pesto on crostini; top with prosciutto or thinly sliced meat
Croutons: toss bread cubes with pesto before baking
Fish: spoon pesto over tilapia, cod, salmon, walleye
Meats: spoon pesto over sautéed pork chops, lamb chops, steaks
Pizza: spread on pizza crust instead of pizza sauce; add toppings
Potatoes: stir into mashed or roasted potatoes
Poultry: spoon pesto over sautéed chicken cutlets or turkey tenderloins
Salads: stir pesto into chicken, tuna, egg, ham or shrimp salad
Sandwiches: combine mayo with pesto and spread on bread
Soup: garnish soup with a dollop of pesto before serving
Vegetables: stir into steamed, sautéed or grilled vegetables
Vinaigrettes: add additional olive oil and vinegar to create vinaigrette


* Recipes created for given quantity. Changes to quantities are for planning purposes only and have not been tested.