When I was still vegetarian I loved eating pesto pasta. At that time I always made pasta with store bought pesto. Since becoming vegan I wanted to create a vegan pesto recipe that will be as flavourful as I remember the original one. The secret to achieving this was roasting the pine nuts and substituting the original parmesan with cashews and nutritional yeast. It also contains just the right amount of olive oil so that it’s rich but not too oily.
I’m very pleased with how this recipe turned out. I think it’s even better than the original. But maybe that has also something to do with using fresh ingredients at home. I use this pesto in vegan pesto pasta, beetroot noodles pesto pasta, vegan meatball sub, vegan pesto potatoes, green goddess sandwich and on vegan pesto pizza. Try making these recipes, I’m confident you’ll love them. You can also serve it as part of vegan cheese board.
Vegan Pesto (GF)
- 135 g pine nuts roasted
- 40 g cashews
- 30 g fresh basil leaves
- 80 ml (1/3 cup) olive oil
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast (I used fortified with B12)
- 3/4 tsp salt or to taste
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper or to taste
- Heat the oven to 180 °C. Arrange the pine nuts over the baking tray with baking paper and roast them for 5 min. If you are making a bigger batch perhaps an additional minute of roasting is necessary but otherwise 5 minutes is perfect.
- Put all the ingredients in a blender and mix everything well together so it gets the texture of a sauce. (I like to crush pine nuts and cashews in the blender first and then add other ingredients.)
- Transfer the mixture into a small jar and store it in the fridge. Use it in pasta, on pizza, on bread…