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    You are in: Home / Recipes / How to Easily Make Pesto from Fresh Basil Recipe
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    How to Easily Make Pesto from Fresh Basil

    How to Easily Make Pesto from Fresh Basil. Photo by Sharon123

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    Total Time:

    Prep Time:

    Cook Time:

    5 mins

    5 mins

    0 mins

    Adrienne in Reisterstown's Note:

    This WONDERFUL and easy recipe is courtesy of As expensive as basil pesto is in the stores, you'd think it was difficult to make; but it is incredibly easy. The only equipment you need is a food processor, blender or chopper.

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    Units: US | Metric

    • 2 cups basil (fresh leaves, stuff them into a measure cup and press them down with your hand, it's not a precise m)
    • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
    • 1/4 cup pine nuts (if you don't have pine nuts, you can use walnuts or hazelnuts)
    • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced (or 1 tablespoon of prepared minced garlic)
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (helps prevent the pesto from turning brown upon exposure to the air)
    • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 teaspoon sugar


    1. 1
      Pick the leaves off of the stems. Discard any flower buds, stems or leaves that aren't in good shape. All we want are leaves; small, medium or large; as long as they are a healthy green, not brown or molding!
    2. 2
      Wash the basil. Just wash them in a large bowl under cold water, no soap!
    3. 3
      Chop the pine nuts and garlic in the food processor. If you don't have a food processor, you can use a blender.
    4. 4
      Add the basil leaves, lemon, and olive oil and chop. Stuff the basil leaves (in small batches) into the food processor and chop them into the garlic, olive oil and pine nuts.
    5. 5
      Chop the mix until it forms a thick, smooth paste.
    6. 6
      Add the grated Parmesan cheese to the food processor and blend! IMPORTANT NOTE: if you intend to freeze the pesto, leave the cheese OUT and add it when you thaw and use the pesto.
    7. 7
      Add 1 teaspoon of sugar or Splenda to the batch to bring the flavor alive. (Optional).
    8. 8
      The pesto will keep in refrigerator for about a week, or you can freeze it and it will last for 3 to 6 months.
    9. 9
      Serving? Most people serve it over pasta or use it to season fish and chicken dishes.

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    Ratings & Reviews:

    • on June 16, 2013


      Easy and tasty. Freezes well. I used the walnut option. Thank you for a lovely recipe. Any tips out there on how to easily remove basil oil stains from the fingers lol?

      people found this review Helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes | No
    • on August 16, 2010


      Love it! This was easy and wonderful. We used it on turkey paninis. Great combo.

      people found this review Helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes | No
    • on September 24, 2007


      Easy and so yummy! I used the lemon juice and will have this with pasta! Thank you!

      people found this review Helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes | No


    Nutritional Facts for How to Easily Make Pesto from Fresh Basil

    Serving Size: 1 (227 g)

    Servings Per Recipe: 1

    Amount Per Serving
    % Daily Value
    Calories 865.1
    Calories from Fat 763
    Total Fat 84.8 g
    Saturated Fat 13.4 g
    Cholesterol 22.0 mg
    Sodium 389.1 mg
    Total Carbohydrate 15.9 g
    Dietary Fiber 2.8 g
    Sugars 6.3 g
    Protein 17.5 g

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