Basil Almond Pesto

It was the pesto times, it was, well, the pesto times. We keep things positive here folks!


Pesto is an absolute joy for so many reason, and there are endless ways to make your own. I know this because I feel like I have made them all! However, after all my self-inflicted research, this recipe for basil almond pesto is the clear winner. It's extremely similar to the traditional basil and pine nut pesto that started the pesto revolution, too. The biggest difference is using almonds instead of pine nuts. Personally, I like to reserve my pine nuts for sweeter endeavors and find that using roasted almonds makes the already perfect concept of pesto even more perfect. So this is my basil almond pesto recipe!


To note: I have experimented with walnuts, pistachios, cashews and sunflower seeds as well, and they are all delish! Enjoy!

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:


3 cups (4 oz) fresh basil leaves

½ cup roasted almonds

½ cup grated parmesan or pecorino cheese

4 whole garlic cloves, peeled

½ teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

½ cup olive oil


WHAT YOU'LL DO:


To create the perfect pesto, you can use either a food processor or a blender. I personally think using a food processor is easier, but I have made pesto many times in a blender. The blender route requires a little bit more effort, but just a little bit.


Add all ingredients to the food processor or blender EXCEPT for the olive oil. Pulse or blend until ingredients are well broken down. If you are using a blender, this is where you may need to use a spatula to help the ingredients find their way. With the blender turned OFF, stir the ingredients around and keep blending until they are evenly broken down.


Now, you're going to slowly drizzle the olive oil into the food processor as you pulse, incorporating it bit by bit into the pesto. If you are using a blender, add olive oil as you blend if your blender allows, otherwise add it bit by bit however you can.


Your pesto should look well incorporated and stunningly green. Be sure to check on those almonds—they like to hide and act difficult! It will come as no surprise to anyone that I am team CHUNKY PESTO, but you can make your basil almond pesto as smooth as you like!


Store your pesto in the fridge until you are ready to use it. It should last about a week, but as always, follow your nose!


Pesto is delicious in pasta, pasta salads, chicken salad, deviled eggs, on meat, on eggs, on toasts, or even as a red sauce substitute on pizza! The pestobilities are endless.


For pasta dishes, add the pesto into your cooked pasta. Slowly add some pasta water as you stir in your pesto until you achieve your desired creaminess and dreaminess!


Make it step-by-step with me below!

1. To create the perfect pesto, you can use either a food processor or a blender. I personally think using a food processor is easier, but I have made pesto many times in a blender. The blender route requires a little bit more effort, but just a little bit.

2. Add all ingredients to the food processor or blender EXCEPT for the olive oil.

3. Pulse or blend until ingredients are well broken down. If you are using a blender, this is where you may need to use a spatula to help the ingredients find their way. With the blender turned OFF, stir the ingredients around and keep blending until they are evenly broken down.

4. Now, you're going to slowly drizzle the olive oil into the food processor as you pulse, incorporating it bit by bit into the pesto. If you are using a blender, add olive oil as you blend if your blender allows, otherwise add it bit by bit however you can.

5. Your pesto should look well incorporated and stunningly green. Be sure to check on those almonds—they like to hide and act difficult! It will come as no surprise to anyone that I am team CHUNKY PESTO, but you can make your basil almond pesto as smooth as you like!

6. Store your pesto in the fridge until you are ready to use it. It should last about a week, but as always, follow your nose!


Pesto is delicious in pasta, pasta salads, chicken salad, deviled eggs, on meat, on eggs, on toasts, or even as a red sauce substitute on pizza! The pestobilities are endless.


For pasta dishes, add the pesto into your cooked pasta. Slowly add some pasta water as you stir in your pesto until you achieve your desired creaminess and dreaminess!


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