New This Month

Under 30 Minutes

Basic Basil Pesto


A special thanks to whoever invented the food processor, which lets us whip up this tasty pesto in 5 minutes flat.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Yield: Makes 3/4 cup

Source: Everyday Food, June 2010


  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 3 cups packed fresh basil leaves (2 1/4 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan


  1. On a cutting board, sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon salt over garlic and roughly chop. Using a flat side of the knife blade, crush mixture into a thick paste. Add to a food processor with pine nuts, basil, and 1 tablespoon oil. Pulse until ingredients are finely chopped. With machine running, add remaining oil in a slow, steady stream. Add Parmesan and pulse to combine. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook's Notes

You can substitute walnuts or pecans for the pine nuts. You can also replace half the basil with arugula or parsley. Or try cilantro along with pumpkin seeds.

To store: Place pesto in an airtight container with plastic wrap pressed against the surface so it doesn't oxidize and turn brown. Refrigerate, up to 2 days. Freeze up to 3 months (thaw before using).

Reviews Add a comment