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5-Minute Easy Pesto Recipe for Busy Weeknight Dinners

Looking for an easy, healthy pesto recipe for a busy weeknight dinner everyone will love? Make this 5-Minute Pesto Recipe, and, I promise, you’ll be hooked! Plus, get 5 more easy, healthy pesto recipes to try!

5-Minute Easy Pesto Recipe

So, tell me…What’s on repeat at your house for a quick and easy dinner EVERYONE loves?

My list includes Spaghetti and Meat Sauce, Crunchy Lentil Tacos with Avocado Feta Guacamole, Grilled Cheese Sandwiches w/ Trader Joe’s Organic Cream of Tomato Sauce, this Farmer’s Market BLT & Chopped Avocado Pizza Salad, oh, and this SUPER easy pesto recipe with gluten free pasta we eat almost every week.

Not lyin’.

Sometimes I make this easy pesto recipe with just basil, but other times, when I want to get in an extra dose of leafy greens {remember they’re an essential component of the MIND Diet}, I throw in some spinach, kale, Swiss chard, or whatever greens I have in the fridge, and, nobody’s the wiser.

Trust me. It’s a win, win.

It’s So Easy to Make This Quick & Easy Pesto Recipe…

The other key ingredients in my easy pesto recipe, besides the green stuff, are extra virgin olive oil, pine nuts, garlic {or garlic oil if you’re following a low FODMAP diet plan}, Parmesan cheese {easily omitted for a vegan version}, plus salt and pepper. And, that’s it!

Ingredients for my Easy Pesto Recipe | EA Stewart, The Spicy RD

[click_to_tweet tweet=”Dinner is served! 5-Minute Quick & Easy Healthy Pesto to the rescue! #glutenfree #vegetarian” quote=”Dinner is served! 5-Minute Quick & Easy Healthy Pesto to the rescue! “]

You can whip up this Easy Pesto Recipe in 5 minutes for a healthy dinner everyone will love!

Easy Pesto Recipe

Looking for an easy pesto recipe for a busy weeknight dinner everyone will love? Make my 5 Minute Pesto Recipe, and, I promise, you’ll be hooked!
5 from 4 votes
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh basil + leafy greens {i.e. spinach, kale, chard, etc}
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese {omit for vegan version}
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 3 cloves garlic {omit & add 1 tablespoon garlic oil for low FODMAP version}
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, or to taste

Instructions

  • Combine all the ingredients in a food processor with blade attachment. Process until blended. Scrape down sides, and process again until smooth, or desired consistency is achieved. Store in refrigerator, tightly covered, until ready to use, or for up to 3 days. Or, freeze in ice cube trays, and defrost as needed when ready to serve.

Video

Notes

Serving Suggestions

  1. Serve on top of your favorite pasta. I especially like this with lentil or chickpea pasta {affiliate links} for extra protein and fiber. All you need on the side, is some fresh fruit.
  2. Make a pizza! Top your favorite crust with pesto, then add cheese and sliced fresh tomatoes for a delicious pizza night!
  3. Add this easy pesto to veggie noodles or noodles.
  4. Swirl it in to a bowl of soup. Yum!
  5. For a healthy snack., how about topping some Greek yogurt with a little pesto, then serving it with carrots, cucumber, and other veggies? Sounds good to me!
  6. Oh, and for breakfast, scrambled eggs go really well with this easy pesto recipe + chopped up cherry tomatoes and spinach. Enjoy!

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 272kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 253mg | Potassium: 92mg | Vitamin A: 1460IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 88mg | Iron: 0.6mg
EA Stewart, RD | Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
Course Dinner, Lunch, Sauce
Cuisine Gluten Free, Italian, Low FODMAP Option, Mediterranean, Vegan Option, Vegetarian
Keyword easy pesto, pesto recipe
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Once you’ve mastered this basic pesto recipe, you’ll definitely want to try these other healthy pesto recipes I’ve rounded up from my dietitian and food blogger friends.

5 Healthy Pesto Recipes You’ll Love

Zucchini Noodles with Lemony Avocado Pesto | Gluten Free & Vegan Recipe at EA Stewart, The Spicy RD

These Zucchini Noodles with Lemony Avocado Pesto {Gluten Free, Vegan, Paleo, Low Carb} are one of the most popular recipes on my blog. And, with good reason, because they’re easy to make, super nourishing, and oh-so-delicious. Be sure and give ’em a try!

Creamy Buratta Cheese with Pesto and Tomatoes

Doesn’t this Creamy Burrata with Pesto and Tomatoes {Gluten Free, Vegetarian} from Jenny Shea Rawn at My Cape Cod Kitchen, look absolutely dreamy? My kids got hooked on Buratta when we were in Italy 2 Summers ago. I can’t wait to make this for them. And, for me too!!

Cilantro Pistachio Pesto Recipe

Or, this creamy Cilantro Pistachio Pesto {Gluten Free, Vegan, Paleo} from Liz at Shaw’s Simple Swaps? This would be absolutely dreamy on a veggie or turkey burger for your next Summer BBQ. Just sayin’ 🙂

Parsley Stem Pesto Recipe

Oh, and I think this Parsley Stem Pesto with Roasted Asparagus {Gluten Free, Vegetarian}, from Julie at RDelicious Kitchen is a absolutely genius, not to mention delicious, way to cut back on food waste!

Easy Fresh Mint Pesto

And, last but not least, this Fresh Mint Pea Pesto {Gluten Free, Vegan} from Amber at Homemade Nutrition, is a delicious “cheese free” alternative to traditional basil pesto, not to mention a great way to use up any mint you’ve got growing in your garden. Yum!

Let’s Chat!

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE “GO-TO” QUICK AND EASY DINNER? DO YOU LOVE PESTO AS MUCH AS MY FAMILY AND I DO? WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE WAY TO SERVE PESTO? ANY NON-TRADITIONAL INGREDIENTS YOU ADD TO YOUR PESTO?

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11 thoughts on “5-Minute Easy Pesto Recipe for Busy Weeknight Dinners”

  1. So many awesome pesto recipes here EA! Thanks for including mine in the mix. I have to say, I just whipped up another variation last Monday and it’s been a staple all week on pizzas, sammies and even eggs! I threw spinach, almonds, oil and peppers with some spices in the processor. A few minutes later, heaven :)! I hope you have a fabulous weekend!

  2. Great minds EA! Just posted a mint & radish greens pesto recipe. I love making all different kinds, but your traditional one looks fantastic, as do so many of these recipes! BTW, when I was writing my recent post I looked up the history of pesto, and Tommy’s suggestion about using a mortar and pestle is actually how it’s traditionally done!

    1. Your Mint & Radish Greens Pesto recipe looks fabulous Jessica, and is such a creative twist! And, now I think I have a good excuse to buy a pretty mortar and pestle 🙂 Cheers!

    1. Yes! I’m planning on making LOTS of pesto this summer to freeze for the rest of the year. Maybe I’ll even plant some basil in my garden this summer 🙂

  3. Thanks for the recipes, I have never made pesto at home, and am intrigued by the idea of freezing it. How long do you think it keeps in the freezer?

    I have read that using a mortar and pestle is really effective for making pesto. Being able to freeze some of it may help justify the extra work.

    1. Hi Tommy~You’re most welcome! I love your idea of making pesto with a mortar and pestle. I’ve never tried it before, but sounds like a good workout too 🙂 I’ve read anywhere from 3 months, up to 9 months for freezing pesto. To keep it as fresh as possible, I suggest freezing in the ice cube trays first (silicon would work well), then removing the frozen cubes from the try and placing them in a freezer-proof bag or glass freezer container. I’d love to hear how it tours out for you~Cheers!

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