Pesto 101

I think pesto is a very cool,  versatile thing to have in your cooking repertoire. You can mix it into pasta, spread it on toast with a little avocado and sprinkle of feta and ricotta, make some rockin’ pizza. You get the picture. Today we are going to talk about basil pesto. My pestos are nut and seed free because we have food allergies in our family. Traditionally you would use pine nuts or could use pumpkin seeds.


A cup of fresh basil leaves

Fresh garlic to taste

Olive Oil

Pinch of sea salt

Add ins: Steamed or blanched veggies – broccoli or asparagus…



Wash basil leaves and tear off stems. I’m not sure that you need to tear off the stems, but I always do. Chop some fresh garlic. Pile leaves and garlic into food processor or whatever mixer you are using. I use my Nutribullet a lot. It’s always out for my smoothies and it is so easy to clean, etc. Pour in some olive oil and mix. Easy, right? You can add a nice hard Parmesan in at this point – but I just grate some on top later if I’m using the pesto for pasta.

I was doing too many things while I was cooking tonight. I was on the phone with my dad, reminding my son that we already had frozen yogurt so no ice cream…and this happened:


That is like pesto water. When you use the Nutribullet to make pesto or hummus – you often have to add a little water.  (NOT with a food processor.) Clearly I was distracted and used too much. I stood looking at this green water equal parts amused and annoyed at myself. Okay – I was mostly amused.


Luckily I had a bunch of steamed broccoli that I was going to toss into the pasta. Now I tossed it into the Nutribullet with about a quarter of the green pesto water.


Blessed veggie. The heart cleaner.

And we got this:


And then I tossed it into the quinoa brown rice pasta from Trader Joes – ’cause we do gluten up in this place – but not that often.


I had to use a little more pesto than usual – as you know it was a bit diluted.

But it worked.

Enjoy! Let me know what you made for dinner tonight and how you make your pesto. Next week – hummus!







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