Homemade Basil Pesto is full of flavor and can be used in so many different ways. Make your own pesto with fresh basil, pine nuts, garlic, olive oil and Parmesan cheese.
Homemade Basil Pesto is packed full of flavor. Right now my basil in my garden is going crazy. It had such a slow start and I was certain I wasn't going to be able to make any pesto this year.
Then, boom. It turned hot and the basil grew and grew and grew. I keep picking and making batches of pesto. I freeze the pesto in small containers to use all year long. We use pesto as a dip with crackers, on cheesy garlic bread, spread on pizza, on grilled cheese sandwiches and baked into bread.
If you have a bunch of basil in your garden, you might also try making basil mayonnaise.
How long will homemade pesto last?
Homemade pesto will last for up to one week if stored covered in the refrigerator. Simply bring back to room temperature before using. If the oils have separated, just give the pesto a stir.
How do I freeze pesto?
- Portion pesto into small freezer safe containers
- Cover and freeze
- Use ice cube trays to make small portions
- There's approximately 1 tablespoon in each cube
How do I use frozen pesto?
- Remove from freezer and allow pesto to thaw at room temperature
- Stir before using
Do I need to use a food processor to make homemade basil pesto?
I do use a food processor. You could also use a blender if you didn't have a food processor.
What if I don't have pine nuts?
You can leave the pine nuts out if you don't have any. Walnuts can also be substituted for the pine nuts. The pesto will have a different taste if using walnuts.
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Homemade Basil Pesto
- 4 cups fresh basil leaves
- 2 cloves garlic
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup pine nuts
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Place garlic cloves in a food processor. Pulse for a few seconds until garlic is chopped.
- Add basil. Turn processor on. With motor running drizzle olive oil through feed tube.
- Scrape down sides. Add pine nuts, cheese, salt and pepper. Run processor until ingredients are well combined.
- If mixture is too thick, add an additional tablespoon of olive oil.
- Use pesto right away or cover and refrigerate.
- Pesto can also be frozen.