RecipeClassic Pesto

Nutrition Facts
Amount per Serving
  • Calories: 150
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Total Fat: 15 g
    • Unsaturated Fat: 13 g
    • Saturated Fat: 2 g
  • Cholesterol: 5 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate: 2 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 1 g
  • Total Sugar: 0 g
    • Natural Sugar: 0 g
    • Added Sugar: 0 g
  • Sodium: 130 mg

Pesto is my passion and this classic condiment has me green with pesto frenzy! The bold and vibrant-colored sauce can spruce up pasta, frittatas, sandwiches, and so much more. While traditional pesto calls for pine nuts, you can swap with any nut you have on hand. I like to use walnuts which provide heart-healthy omega-3 fats and deliver a creamy, buttery flavor that really shines after a quick toast in the oven. Toasted almonds are also a delish option. The pesto is yet to come!

  • Prep time
  • Total Time
This recipe makes 1 ½ cups
  • • 3 cups basil leaves (stems removed)
  • • ½ cup grated Parmesan or pecorino cheese
  • • 1 cup toasted pine nuts, walnuts, or almonds*
  • • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • • 3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped (or ¼ teaspoon powder)
  • • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste
  • • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper, or more to taste
  • • ¼ cup water
  • • 6 to 8 Tablespoons EVOO (depending on preferred consistency)

* To toast your nuts, bake in the oven at 350°F. For pine nuts, bake for about 4 minutes, then stir and bake until golden brown. For the walnuts, bake for about 6-9 minutes, and for almonds, bake for about 5-10 minutes, shaking the pan a few times.



Combine the basil, Parmesan, nuts, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper in a food processor or blender and pulse until finely chopped. Add ¼ cup water and scrape down the sides as needed to ensure everything is well combined. Then drizzle in the oil while you continue to pulse until everything is evenly blended (start with 6 Tablespoons and check consistency. Add an additional 1 Tablespoon at a time until it’s the texture you prefer). Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve on crostini, roasted sweet potatoes or toss with your favorite pasta.

Pro tip: I recommend making the pesto right before serving so it maintains its green color (it develops a browner appearance when it sits; but don’t be thrown by the change in color as it’s still just as delicious). To slow browning in the fridge, place leftover pesto in an airtight container, pour a thin layer of olive oil on top, and cover with a lid.

Nutrition provided for 2 tablespoons pesto.

Add a few dollops on this Spring Frittata with Asparagus and Artichokes!