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Healthier Fresh Basil Pesto

I don’t know when it started or why, but one of my pet peeves is wasting food in our home.  I feel like we buy SO MUCH good food, that when it’s wasted, I get a bit upset  So when I decided to buy some Basil for my 3 Ingredient Breakfast Pizza Crust, I knew that we’d be making something else related to the Basil family in the very near future.  Enter this Fresh Basil Pesto, that I made to be a bit healthier than any of the recipes I’ve seen in the past.

On this night, we enjoyed our fresh pesto with some tasty Fettuccine.  To fulfill the other half of our meal, we sliced up some carrots and red onion and baked them in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.  It was a delicious, filling meal that I can’t wait to make again in the near future.  Adding some chicken next time for good measure.  Yum!

Fresh Basil Pesto

Healthier Fresh Basil Pesto

Total Time: 20 minutes

Serves: ~5; makes around 1 cup of pesto sauce


  • 3-4 cups fresh Basil leaves, removed from the stem
  • 3 cloves of Garlic
  • 1/4 cup crushed Black Walnuts
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper to taste; crushed red pepper optional

Materials Needed

  • Food Processor (I used the size usually created for single serve smoothies)


  1. Place all ingredients into the food processor, except for the olive oil.  Pulse on medium, moving to low, until all of the ingredients have a traditional, Pesto-like consistency.
  2. Slowly pour in 1/5 of the olive oil, and stir to combine.  Then the next 1/5, stir to combine.  Follow this progression until all of the olive oil is combined into the pesto.
  3. Salt & pepper to taste, adding the a bit of crushed red pepper if it’s of interest.  Stir again to combine.
  4. Remove from the food processor and enjoy!  Store extra in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Note that this pesto includes FRESH ingredients, and very all are healthy within moderation.  I used less olive oil than usual, more garlic, and switched to black walnuts instead of pine nuts.  Small changes that make for an even healthier you.

Fresh Basil Pesto _2


What is your favorite pasta sauce?

Do you have a favorite pesto variety?

Create a great life!


“What I Ate Wednesday” will be back next week, as the schedule this week is adjusted due to wedding week and the holiday weekend.

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