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Looking for a quick and tasty addition to pasta, potatoes or a refreshing salad? Want a healthy spread for pizza and sandwiches? The answer is basil pesto: a delicious blend of basil, arugula, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, and garlic. This simple recipe, made from scratch, will tantalize your taste buds.

Basil pesto in a small jar on wooden table.

Recipes for basil pesto vary from one cook to another. This easy recipe brings the peppery taste of arugula to the party, giving it another dimension of flavor. It yields 1 cup pesto and is ready in about 5 minutes.

Pesto Origins

Pesto originated in Genoa, Italy, in the mid 19th century, following the introduction of basil from its origins in India. The recipe made its way to the U.S. in the 1940s, though it didn’t gain popularity until the 80s and 90s.

It’s so popular that canned pesto is available on the grocery shelves. But nothing beats learning how to make basil pesto at home.

Ingredients & Tools

Basil pesto ingredients prepped on wooden table.

To make basil pesto in 3 simple steps, gather the follow ingredients and items:

  • 3 cups fresh basil
  • 1 cup fresh arugula
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 tablespoon pine nuts
  • 1 garlic clove
  • salt, to taste
  • Kitchen Blender

Step #1. Place Ingredients in Blender

Basil pesto ingredients in a bullet blender jar.

Place all ingredients into the blender jar.

Basil pesto ingredients in a bullet blender.

Step #2. Blend Until Smooth

Basil pesto in a bullet blender jar.

Blend until smooth. Season with salt to taste.

Step #3. Ready to Use

Basil pesto over tomatoes and bocconcini.

Transfer to a jar and use as desired.

How to Use it

Storage

Fridge Storage: You can keep basil pesto in the refrigerator for three days in a glass jar or airtight container.

Freezer Storage: You can also freeze it. Curious how to freeze pesto? It’s actually quite easy. If you want to use it in small amounts, portion it out into an ice cube tray and transfer it to the freezer. Take the frozen cubes and put them into a freezer bag. The cubes can last up to 6 months.

For larger amounts, put the pesto in small freezer-safe containers and into the freezer for up to 12 months.

Basil pesto in a small glass jar.

Did you enjoy this fresh, homemade basil pesto? Let me know in the comments and please share the recipe!

Basil pesto in a small jar on wooden table.

Basil Pesto Recipe

Joss Dyckson
Looking for a quick and tasty addition to pasta, pizza or potatoes? The answer is this basil pesto: a delicious blend of basil, arugula, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, and garlic. This simple recipe, made from scratch, will tantalize your taste buds.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Condiment
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 1/4 cup servings
Calories 132 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 3 cups fresh basil
  • 1 cup fresh arugula
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese - grated
  • 1 tablespoon pine nuts
  • 1 garlic clove
  • salt - to taste

Instructions
 

  • Place all ingredients into the blender jar.
    Basil pesto ingredients in a bullet blender.
  • Blend until smooth. Season with salt to taste.
    Basil pesto in a bullet blender jar.
  • Your pesto is ready. Store in a jar or airtight container in the fridge.
    Basil pesto in a small glass jar.

Equipment

Blender

Notes

  • Fridge Storage: You can keep basil pesto in the refrigerator for three days in a glass jar or airtight container.
  • Freezer Storage: You can also freeze it. Curious how to freeze pesto? It’s actually quite easy. If you want to use it in small amounts, portion it out into an ice cube tray and transfer it to the freezer. Take the frozen cubes and put them into a freezer bag. The cubes can last up to 6 months. For larger amounts, put the pesto in small freezer-safe containers and into the freezer for up to 12 months.

Nutrition

Calories: 132kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 6gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 11mgSodium: 193mgPotassium: 109mgVitamin A: 1175IUVitamin C: 4.2mgCalcium: 178mgIron: 1mg

Nutrition information on In the Kitch is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. It may not include toppings and/or sauces.

Keyword basil, fresh basil
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