Walnut Basil Pesto

Basic Pesto

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Course: Dips, Dressings, Marinades
Keyword: Dips, Dressings, Marinades
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Calories: 1560kcal


  • Food Processor or blender
  • Skillet

Adjust Servings


  • 6 cloves garlic unpeeled
  • 1/2 cup walnuts Can be toasted for added flavor, you can also replace with any kind of nut/seed or dismiss all together.
  • 4 cups basil fresh
  • 2 cups parsley fresh
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 to 1 cup olive oil Depends on how wet one likes their pesto. I lean towards a dryer pesto so I tend to only use about 1/2 a cup.
  • salt and pepper to taste

Optional Add-Ins

  • red pepper flakes
  • avocado oil to replace the olive oil
  • jalapeños raw or grilled for added spice and flavor
  • sun dried tomatoes


  • In a skillet over medium heat toast garlic cloves in their skins shaking often, until brown spots form. Takes about 5 minutes, remove to a small bowl to allow to cool before peeling.
  • Using the same pan on medium heat toast walnuts until fragrant, stirring frequently to prevent burning 5-10 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • Note: toasted walnuts and garlic is optional.
  • Once walnut and garlic have been cooled place into a food processor along with basil, parsley, parmesan. Blend on a low setting for a few minutes then slowing add the oil. Once it is to a desired texture. Add salt and pepper to taste and any other optional ingredients.
  • Store in a tightly sealed jar in the fridge for up 2 week. You can add to pasta, soups, spread on bread for sandwiches or on top of meat(salmon, chicken, shrimp, steak, or pork) when cooking.


If you were to Google pesto it will say “a sauce of crushed basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil, typically served with pasta.” But it can be so much more.
My definition of pesto is a blend of fresh whole ingredients including,
  • Fresh herbs or greenery including Basil, Parsley, Dill, Arugula, Cilantro, Tomatoes(fresh or dried), Fennel, ect.
  • Nut or seed including Walnuts, Pine Nuts, Sunflower Seeds, Flax Seeds, ect.
  • Oils including Olive Oil, Avocado Oil, Walnut Oil, Sun Dried Tomato Oil, ect.
  • Hard cheese like Parmigiano, Pecorino, ect.
  • Garlic can be raw, roasted, toasted, grilled, confit, ect.
Pesto is a versatile flavor enhancing sauce one should always keep on hand. 


Serving: 6people | Sodium: 807mg | Calcium: 683mg | Vitamin C: 6mg | Vitamin A: 404IU | Sugar: 2g | Fiber: 4g | Potassium: 377mg | Cholesterol: 34mg | Calories: 1560kcal | Monounsaturated Fat: 88g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 27g | Fat: 159g | Protein: 28g | Carbohydrates: 16g | Iron: 3mg

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