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Homemade vegan basil pesto is so easy! Learn how to make this vegan pesto recipe at home in only 10 minutes and a handful of ingredients!

vegan basil pesto in a small glass bowl

One of the most popular pesto sauce is Pesto Alla Genovese. A pesto made with fresh basil, roasted pine nuts, and olive oil.

The original recipe calls for Parmesan cheese, which is a common ingredient in the classic Italian kitchen. But let me show you how to make this recipe vegan friendly!

Vegan Pesto Sauce with Basil

As you might know, Parmesan contains dairy an is therefore not vegan-friendly. But hey, you can make a tasty pesto even without Parmesan! No need to add cheese. 

I like to add a little more pine nuts to make up for the consistency of the Parmesan. It is also possible to add some vegan parmesan or nutritional yeast to enhance the cheesy flavor.

Making this homemade vegan pesto is quick and easy! No need to buy it! It is much more delicious than storebought pesto! Freshness is key here!

Beyond Pesto Spaghetti – Uses for Basil Pesto

I love serving this vegan basil pesto with a pot freshly cooked spaghetti. Top it with this vegan Parmesan for a delicious comfort meal!

vegan basil pesto sauce with spaghetti

You can serve it with all kinds of pasta, not only with spaghetti. Or use is for one of the following vegan recipe ideas:

  • As a pizza topping
  • As a sandwich sauce
  • As a dipping sauce with veggie sticks or fresh bread
  • With oven-roasted vegetables
  • As a salad dressing ingredient

How To Make This Vegan Pesto Recipe – Tipps & Variations

You only need a handful of ingredients and a blender to make this recipe. A food processor or hand-held blender works too. If you don’t have any of those electric kitchen appliances at home, you can use a mortar to grind everything into a fine pesto sauce.

Olive oil: Since this influences the taste of the Pesto substantially, I recommend using high-quality olive oil.

Basil: Use fresh basil from your garden or supermarket. To reduce food waste, also use the stalks and not only the basil leaves. Make sure to wash the basil and shake it dry before using it. This will get rid of any little animals living on your basil (especially is using basil from your garden). Dried basil is not suitable for pesto.

Pine nuts: Roast the pine nuts in a skillet without fat. This will enhance its flavor. It’s possible to substitute pine nuts with other nuts such as almonds or cashew nuts. Although, the original basil pesto is made with pine nuts.

Garlic: Garlic and pesto belong together. If you are sensitive to raw garlic, omit it or only use a tiny amount.

Food Processor vs Blender

I have made pesto with both kitchen appliances and find that pesto made with a food processor is chunkier. If you make your pesto in a blender, it has a smoother texture, as you can see in the pictures or video.

Does it keep?

Shelf life: f you store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator, it stays fresh for 1-2 weeks. To keep the pesto fresh as long as possible, cover it with olive oil after each use.

Other Pesto Recipes You’ll Love:

vegan pesto recipe served with spaghetti

Did you try this recipe?

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📖 Recipe

vegan basil pesto in a small glass bowl

Vegan Basil Pesto

Homemade vegan basil pesto is so easy! Learn how to make this vegan pesto recipe at home in only 10 minutes and a handful of ingredients!
Author : Aline Cueni
5 from 1 vote

Click on the stars to leave a vote!

Prep Time :5 minutes
Cook Time :5 minutes
Total Time :10 minutes
Servings : 4
Calories : 150kcal

Ingredients
 

  • 2 tbsp (20 g) pine nuts roasted
  • ¼ cup (50 ml) olive oil
  • 1 cup (20 g) fresh basil
  • 1 clove garlic peeled and minced
  • ¼ tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • Start by roasting the pine nuts for a few minutes in a skillet until golden brown.
  • Wash and shake dry the basil.
  • Add all ingredients into a food processor or blender and pulse until the pesto has your desired consistency.
  • Serve it with pasta or bread.

Notes

  • Shelf life: f you store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator, it stays fresh for 1-2 weeks. To keep the pesto fresh as long as possible, cover it with olive oil after each use.
  • Optional: Add vegan Parmesan or nutritional yeast.
  • Use almonds or cashew nuts instead of pine nuts.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 150kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 14g | Sodium: 146mg

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