Kale Walnut Pesto Pasta
If youre trying to up your meal prep game, making your own dips and sauces can be a game-changer! This pesto that is packed with nutrients, full of flavors, and so versatile. You can serve it with pasta, slather it on your toast, use it in sandwiches, serve it with roasted vegetables and proteins, use it in pizza, salads, etc. As you can see the options are endless! This kale walnut pesto pasta by Mitra Shirmohammadi is a must-try!
Zucchini Basil Pesto Lasagna
Source: Zucchini Basil Pesto Lasagna
Zucchini, cashew cheese, basil pesto, and tomatoes are all combined together to create an explosion of flavor in this lasagna by Amanda Smith. Combining the fresh crunch of the zucchini and tomatoes, with the creaminess of the cashew cheese and the pesto creates a hearty filling meal for everyone.
Our Basil Walnut Pesto Is Dairy
Traditionally, pesto is a simple sauce made of fresh basil, garlic, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil. Our version veers slightly from the traditional recipe and employs walnuts as a healthy and budget-friendly option and we omitted the Parmesan to make this a dairy-free, paleo, and Whole30 pesto. Lastly, we added lemon juice for some subtle zing that brightens all of the flavors.
If youre in need of a nut-free pesto, simply substitute raw pumpkin seeds for the walnuts.
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Try Pesto In These Plant
I served this beautiful oil-free pesto sauce over organic whole wheat pasta from Bionaturae. This pasta brand was highest rated at Americas Test Kitchen for whole wheat pasta, which has good texture and doesnt stick together.
If you are gluten-free, you can also opt for brown rice pasta, quinoa pasta, even a fun and exotic black bean spaghetti that started showing up on the supermarket shelves.
If you would like to leave this low carb, you can most definitely leave out the pasta. You can use spiraled zucchini, baked spaghetti squash, or just top or dip with your raw, lightly steamed or roasted veggies.
I also love using this pesto as a marinade before baking my tofu, and a spread to enhance my wrap or sandwich.
I am so excited when I find a way to recreate our favorites in a healthier way. This pesto recipe is super dynamic and is wonderful to store in a mason jar. This could keep for a good few weeks, using it in a variety of ways. This may become your go-to staple!
Id love to hear your feedback in the comments below for this Pasta with Pesto recipe! If you have a photo, post it on my , tag me using the hashtag #plantbasedcooking in your caption, and I wont miss it!
This recipe is Certified Plantricious because it meets the following guidelines.
The Trusted Seal for
Dairy Free + Whole30 Basil Pesto
This pesto recipe comes together in just a few minutes with wholesome, healthy ingredients like fresh basil, garlic, olive oil, and cashews and without pine nuts. The secret ingredient? Nutritional yeast!
So if you need a boost of flavor in your routine, this is the Basil Pesto recipe youve been looking for! Its packed full of delicious ingredients AND its gluten free, dairy free, vegan, Paleo, Keto, Low Carb, and of course, Whole30.
Not only does it come together in like 2 seconds flat , but its budget friendly AND freezer friendly.
This is the recipe I follow at the end of summer when my garden is basically exploding with basil. I cant let it go to waste, so I make a ton of pesto and freeze it!
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How To Make Budget Friendly Pesto
In summer in Wisconsin, it’s easy to find loads of inexpensive basil at the farmer’s markets. But the rest of the year, this common herb can get pretty pricey. Ditto for pine nuts, all the time.
To keep the healthfulness and flavor highbut the cost lowI use a blend of basil plus another light leafy green like baby spinach, arugula or baby kale. And as a sub for those delicious but spendy pine nuts, I use cheaper and healthy pepita seedsa definite plus if you’re dealing with nut allergies.
You should be able to buy organic raw pepita seeds for less than the cost of most nuts. I’ve even made this with roasted tamari pepitas from my local co-op, which is extra delish.
Pesto processed into a chunky sauce in the food processor
Pesto Feta Swirl Buns
Source: Pesto Feta Swirl Buns
Herby pesto swirl buns with vegan feta cheese! These swirl rolls by Anna Sue are kind of addictive. They seem to disappear before they touch the table. Imagine a light and fluffy dough swirled with homemade pesto and melty feta cheese. So soft, springy, and ultra fluffy. And its super simple to make, but its a great base for the buns.
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What To Eat With Easy Oil Free Vegan Pesto
Pasta is probably the first thing that comes to mind when most people think of pesto. I love it tossed with spaghetti, maybe with some fresh cherry tomatoes and basil thrown in. Or with some roasted vegetables like in my Pepita Pasta with Roasted Veggies recipe.
And it’s great slathered on a sandwich, too. But perhaps my all-time favorite way to eat pesto–and the one I pined for when I first became a vegan–is on a piping hot, thin-crust pesto pizza. With this chunky, tasty pesto recipe at hand, I’m not missing a thing.
Vegan Pesto With Lemon And Pistachios
Throw it in pasta, toss it in a salad, smear it on a sandwich, and don’t even bother trying to resist gobbling it straight from a spoon! This vegan pesto packs a flavor punch from fresh basil, garlic and a touch of fresh lemon juice.The best part: it whips up in minutes!
The first time I tried to make pesto, it turned out horrible. I used dried basil. Oops.
In my defense: I was twelve at the time. Still working on my culinary skills! Anyhow, I’d had pesto at our local Spaghetti Factory and fell in love. I’m not sure I followed a recipe. I probably asked the server what was in this delicious sauce and thought I’d stuck gold when I realized mom had all the ingredients on hand.
But no, she really didn’t.
In case you were wondering, pesto made with dried basil is a chewy, disgusting mess.
So yeah, this recipe uses fresh basil, and is far superior to my original pesto recipe. And also, this one is vegan!
I’ve made lots of versions of vegan pesto, and although they were all a million billion times better than pesto alla dried basil, most were probably more complicated than they needed to be, simply due to the fact that conventional pesto has cheese and I thought replacing that would be super complicated.
Nuts take care of texture. Traditional pesto uses pine nuts, but I went with pistachios for this recipe because I actually like the texture better. Also, they’re way cheaper and keep longer than pine nuts. And as for saltiness, I added salt!
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A Vegan Basil Pesto Sauce That Is Nut & Oil Free
This vegan basil pesto sauce is not only vegan, but also oil and nut free! You might think it would be fairly tasteless, but I promise you it’s not. It has quickly become a favourite in our household. It consists of only 7 ingredients:
- Fresh basil – I use fresh Thai basil because it is grown locally in the Cameron & Genting Highlands, and its delicious!! I buy 1 bag and use the whole thing
- Nutritional yeast – literally the greatest thing ever to exist for vegans. This is your Parmesan cheese replacement. You will honestly find it hard to tell the difference! Every vegan should have nutritional yeast in their cupboards at all times!
- Hemp hearts – another great staple for vegans. The combination of the hemp hearts with the pepitas + nutritional yeast will help create the “parmesan cheese” texture & flavour
- Pepitas – as stated above, the pepitas help create the oily cheese texture and flavour. If you can’t take pepitas, you can substitute for the exact amount of hemp hearts instead. This recipe calls for 4 tbsp of pepitas, therefore you would replace with exactly 4 tbsp of hemp hearts instead
- Other seed alternatives? You could also try this recipe with sunflower seeds if you dont have hemp hearts of pepitas. Use 8 tbsp of sunflowers seeds instead of 4 tbsp of hemp hearts + 4 tbsp of pepitas.
How Can I Use Vegan Pesto
This quick vegan pesto can be added to a variety of dishes:
- Use it in pasta, topping each serving with a teaspoon of nutritional yeast. Great for cold pasta salads, mix it with black olives and fresh finely chopped vegetables for a flavorful summer salad.
- Toss it with roasted potatoes, turnips, and parsnips for a beautiful side dish.
- Mix 1/2 cup of pesto with 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice, and use this thinner version as a salad dressing. Mix 2 cups of arugula, 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, and 4 ounces of vegan feta cheese. Toss the salad with the sauce and serve immediately.
- Make sandwiches and wraps using the pesto as a spread. Use grilled vegetables like eggplants, zucchinis, onions, and peppers as your filling, and smear a generous amount of pesto on a fresh baguette or wrap.
- Top grilled tofu with a dollop of pesto and serve in a vegan bun with a side of arugula and sun-dried tomatoes.
- Mix 2 tablespoons of vegan pesto per 1 1/2 cups of cooked brown or white rice. Use this flavorful rice as a side dish, or add any vegetables of your liking to make it into a rice salad.
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Tips For Making Amazing Vegan Pesto
- Don’t use dried basil.Haha! I hope you figured that out by now, but just in case.
- Walnuts or pine nuts can be subbed for the pistachios.
- Your homemade vegan pesto will keep in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 4-5 days, or in the freezer for about 3 months.
Like this recipe? If so, be sure to follow me on , or , or . And please stop back and leave me a review and rating below if you make it!
Ideas For How To Serve Pesto
Wondering what you can serve pesto on? This Basil Walnut Pesto makes everything you put it on so insanely delicious and flavorful that youll never want to stop. Here are just a few ways you can enjoy Walnut Basil Pesto:
- Serve this walnut-based pesto over roasted spaghetti squash for a comforting bowl of noodles you can really tuck into.
- Drizzle our dairy-free pesto over grilled or sautéed chicken breast, fish, shrimp, or steak for a mind-blowing boost of flavor.
- Toss this vegan pesto with your favorite roasted or grilled vegetables for a fresh, flavorful, and easy side dish, such as these easy Oven-Roasted Carrots.
- Dollop this easy walnut pesto over zucchini noodles or another spiralized vegetable noodle for a 100% plant-based meal
- Toss our homemade basil-walnut pesto with gluten-free pasta for a hearty and healthy, comfort-food pasta dish
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What Happens If Whole Foods Market Tofu Pesto Is Out Of Stock And I Need To Give Specific Instructions
- Find Best Match: By default, your shopper will use their best judgement to pick a replacement for your item.
- Pick Specific Replacement: You can pick a specific alternative for the shopper to purchase if your first choice is out-of-stock.
- Don’t Replace: For items you’d rather not replace, choose “Don’t replace” to get a refund if the item is out of stock.
How To Make Dairy
Making dairy-free pesto is really easy to do. So easy that people who dont even know how to cook could do it!
All you need to do is place all of your ingredients in a high powered blender, like a Vitamix, or a food processor. You turn the machine on, blend it up, scraping down the sides as needed, and there you have it!
Easy homemade dairy-free pesto in a minute.
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How To Make Oil Free Vegan Pesto
Not only is most pesto made with cheese, it’s also full of oil, which most of us on a whole food plant-based diet avoid due to oil’s damaging impact on artery function .
But, when you skip the oil, you need to replace its moisture. If you try just adding water, it ends up tasting watered down. Yet, I didn’t want to add more fat, because while some fat in our diets is fine, too much is decidedly not.
My solution? I added a couple tablespoons of lemon juice and threw in a whole tomato. I figured, quite a few recipes that call for pesto also tend to call for tomatoes , so why not?! I think it works great, but of course I’d really love to know what YOU think!
Use the blender’s low setting to process pesto ingredients processed into a chunky sauce
How To Store And Freeze Pesto
Yes, pesto freezes well, and since this basil walnut pesto recipe is made without cheese, it freezes even more nicely!
We love to freeze pesto in 1- or 2-tablespoon portions by dividing leftovers into the compartments of an extra ice cube tray. Once the pesto is frozen, you can pop the solid pesto cubes into a freezer-safe bag for up to 3 months. Simply add a frozen pesto cube to a pile of hot-cooked pasta and let it melt into the dish . Or, for other uses, let the pesto melt at room temperature before adding to a dish.
To store pesto in the refrigerator: Place pesto in a small glass jar or other small container with lid for up to one week. To prevent the pesto from browning, pour a thin layer of oil on top to completely cover the surface of the pesto.
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Jar Goods Beet + Basil Pesto
Buy Online: JarGoods.com
This clean-label vegan pesto has a unique twist: Its flavored with marinated beets! It does not contain cashews like many of the other pesto sauces, but it does contain walnuts. If youre not a fan of the typical cashew-cream pesto, you might want to give Jar Goods Beet + Basil Pesto a try!
You can find this brand of pasta sauce at select health food stores, but its much easier to buy Jar Goods products from their website. If you want to buy their products from the store, I suggest looking at their product locator to see if they are sold at a store near you.
How Can A Vegan Basil Pesto Sauce Be Oil Free Does It Still Taste Okay
Believe me when I say this vegan basil pesto sauce tastes just as good without oil! Instead of using oil, simply substitute for water. This is a healthier, lower calorie option. It also makes It way easier to make. Why? Because blending oil on high speed makes it turn bitter. You would therefore have to slowly stir in the oil. Because this recipe calls for water instead, you can simply add all of the ingredients to you blender or food processor, and blend for as long as you want!
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Why Isn’t Pesto Vegan
I LOVE pesto and it really sucks that when you go out to eat or buy pre-made pesto, it’s pretty much always made with parmesan cheese. So for us vegans, this rules out a lot of dishes we could otherwise enjoy. So to get my rich and creamy pesto fix, I make my own at home. I have a few different ways of making pesto, but I wanted to share this easy vegan oil-free pesto recipe with you because it’s the fastest, healthiest and cheapest one in my arsenal!
I love that this delicious pesto is:
- nutritional yeast-free
- SO much lower in fat than traditional pesto!
Why Most Pesto Is Not Vegan
Most pesto is not considered vegan for the sole reason that basic recipes call for some kind of hard cheese like Parmesan or pecorino, which is not suitable for vegans. Some authentic Parmesan is even made using rennet, an enzyme found in the lining of a goat or calf’s stomach.
Because of this, a majority of the pesto youll find stocked in grocery store shelves and on restaurant menus wont be vegan-friendly.
On the other hand, with awareness of vegan diets and plant-based recipes increasing in popularity, there are more and more vegan basil pesto alternatives appearing out there that are made using nutritional yeast or simply leave out the Parmesan cheese in lieu of extra olive oil.