Dairy Free Pesto

Dairy-Free Pesto Recipe


2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
3 cloves garlic
1/2 cup pine nuts (you can also use walnuts or almonds if preferred)
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
Salt and pepper, to taste
Juice of 1/2 lemon (optional, for added zest and freshness)


  1. Prepare the Basil: Rinse your basil leaves thoroughly and pat them dry with a kitchen towel or paper towels. Removing as much moisture as possible helps to keep your pesto vibrant and fresh.
  2. Toast the Nuts: In a small skillet over medium heat, lightly toast the pine nuts until golden and fragrant, stirring frequently to prevent burning. This step enhances their flavor but can be skipped if you’re short on time.
  3. Blend: In a food processor or high-powered blender, combine the basil leaves, garlic, toasted nuts, nutritional yeast, and about half of the olive oil. Pulse a few times to chop and blend the ingredients. Scrape down the sides as necessary.
  4. Emulsify: With the processor running, slowly drizzle in the remaining olive oil until the mixture is well combined but still has some texture. You can adjust the amount of olive oil based on your preference for a thicker or thinner pesto.
  5. Season: Taste your pesto and season with salt and pepper. If you’re using lemon juice, add it now and blend briefly to incorporate.
  6. Adjust: If your pesto is too thick, you can thin it by adding a little more olive oil or some water, a tablespoon at a time, until you reach your desired consistency.