Classic Pesto Sauce Featured

Authors: Registered Dietitians

Classic Pesto Sauce

( Typically, pesto is made with fresh basil, garlic, pine nuts, parmesan cheese, olive oil, salt and pepper, but why not experiment with various herbs, nuts and cheeses to come up with your own special pesto.


  •     3 cloves garlic
  •     500ml (2 cups) fresh basil leaves
  •     45ml (3 Tbsp) pine nuts (pignolla)
  •     1 dash of salt and pepper
  •     125ml (1/2 cup) extra virgin olive oil
  •     125ml (1/2 cup) grated Parmesan cheese


1. This simple but flavorful recipe requires minimal preparation. Start by peeling and chopping the garlic. Then wash, dry and remove the stems from the fresh basil.

2. Add the garlic to the food processor and mince. Next, add the basil leaves, pine nuts, and a dash of salt and pepper to the bowl of the processor. While the processor is running, slowly drizzle in olive oil through the feed tube until all the ingredients are pureed.

3. You may need to stop the processor at this point and scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula to get every mixed together. Now add the Parmesan cheese and blend it into the rest of the mixture. If the pesto is too thick, add a tablespoon of water. Toss with your favourite pasta, +/- chicken or add to chopped vegetables salads or pulse-based salads (pulses = chickpeas, lentils, beans & peas).

4. Cover and refrigerate until you are ready to use it. This should keep for 2 - 3 days in the fridge but freezes well if you want to keep it longer.

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