Classic (Vegan) Pesto

Slightly adapted from the wonderful Vegan with a Vengeance cookbook, an easy, yummy vegan pesto. Larry had missed pesto; it's so hard or impossible to find without cheese in it; we've purchase a few vegan versions, but they weren't very good. This one is great. Serve it with whole-wheat pasta; we like Garofalo Fusilli or Spaghetti Whole Wheat Pasta. You can also serve it with fresh grated parmesan cheese on the side for non-vegans. See a video demonstration.

May 2, 2020 Update: Try this with cilantro in place of basil! We have a ton of cilantro growing in the side yard, and Larry mentioned that he saw a cilantro pesto recipe. It works! (I also planted some Italian Basil seeds today, send from the Menlo Park library seed program during the pandemic.)


1/2 cup walnut pieces
3 cups packed basil leaves
3 cloves garlic, smashed and coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, or more to taste
2 teaspoons lemon juice


Fry walnuts and garlic in olive oil for a few minutes, until walnuts are slightly browned. Combine the walnuts and garlic with basil and salt in a food processor or blender and process, adding olive oil as you go. Add the lemon juice and pulse to combine. The sauce should be the consistency of a slightly grainy paste, not a puree.

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