Classic Basil Pesto Recipe: Dynamic Freshness!

In the heart of Italian cuisine lies a vibrant and aromatic sauce that embodies the essence of summer – classic basil pesto. This timeless recipe, originating from Genoa, Italy, bursts with the flavors of fresh basil, pine nuts, garlic, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil. Its bright green hue and intoxicating aroma make it a favorite among food enthusiasts worldwide. Join us on a culinary journey as we explore the art of creating this beloved sauce.

Classic Basil Pesto Recipe

Classic Basil Pesto Recipe

Classic basil pesto is a simple yet flavorful sauce that adds a burst of freshness to any dish. Made with just a handful of ingredients, including fresh basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil, this sauce comes together in minutes. Whether tossed with pasta, spread on bruschetta, or used as a marinade, basil pesto is a versatile condiment that elevates any meal.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Condiments
Cuisine Italian
Servings 8
Calories 137 kcal


  • Food processor
  • Blender


  • 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil plus more for a smoother pesto
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese optional


  • Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil after filling it halfway. Assemble an ice water dish and place it next to your burner. Place the blade attachment on a food processor and set it up.
  • Blanch the basil briefly by submerging the leaves in hot water for five to ten seconds, or until they have wilted. Transfer the basil leaves to the ready-made ice water using tongs. They can’t cook any longer because of this.
  • Tie paper towels around the basil. Squeeze to remove all the water, then add the garlic, pine nuts, and lemon juice to the food processor.
    Classic Basil Pesto Recipe
  • Once everything has crumbled into small pieces, pulse. The extra virgin olive oil should be added gradually while the processor is operating at a low speed. Make sure your basil pesto has a slight texture by not running the machine for an extended period of time.
  • Spoon into a small bowl the basil mixture. Season to taste with salt and pepper and add the cheese. Stir to incorporate. You can adjust the thickness and smoothness of your pesto by adding a small amount additional extra virgin olive oil.
  • Apply right away or save for later.


  • Add the garlic, lemon juice, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, basil, spinach, salt, lemon zest, and pepper to a food processor. Process until almost smooth, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.
  • While mixing until smooth, drizzle the remaining olive oil into the mixture.
  • Adjust the seasoning according to your taste.
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Nutrition Facts

Saturated Fat2g
Vitamin A144IU 

How Long Does Homemade Pesto Last?

This pesto made with basil can be kept for up to a week in the refrigerator or for up to three months in the freezer by carefully sealing it in a jar or other sealable container. Thaw it in the fridge or at room temperature.

Classic Basil Pesto Recipe

Can You Freeze Basil Pesto?

Really! Pesto freezes well for up to six months; defrost it the night before you want to use it. Pesto can be frozen in two different ways:

  • In a Freezer-Safe Jar: Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, then place in the freezer. When I intend to utilize the entire amount in a pasta meal, I do this action.
  • Within Ice Cube Trays: Pour the pesto into ice cube trays, freeze for an hour or until solid, and then move the cubes to freezer bags if you want to be able to use a tiny bit at a time.

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