Cashew Basil Pesto

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Divine is really the only way to describe this pesto. I found if hard to stop spooning it right out of the jar and into my mouth.

Made with a base of creamy cashew nuts (which are half the price of traditionally used pine nuts!), copious amounts of fresh basil, and about half the amount of oil typically used, this is a slimmed-down version of pesto. (It’s dairy-free, too!)

I figured this was the perfect recipe to welcome in the first day of spring, which is today! Of course, the fact that basil was on sale at Whole Foods didn’t hurt either. As the temperatures slowly get warmer, you are going to see more and more fresh herbs at your super market and farmers market, as many of them come into season. 

Pesto can be made with other herbs like parsley or cilantro, but I prefer basil by far. 

You can use this vegan pesto recipe on pasta (I love gluten-free pastas made from either brown rice or chickpea).  Or, on top of gluten-free bread. 

It’s super easy to make: you essentially just throw everything into a Vitamix or food processor, and voila! Ready in less than 5 minutes.  

Try it out, and let me know what you think by dropping me a comment, below!

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Vegan Basil Pesto
A vegan pesto made with basil and cashews. Dairy-free pesto.
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Course Side Dish
Prep Time 7 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Course Side Dish
Prep Time 7 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
You:
Rate this recipe!
Add to Meal Plan:
This recipe has been added to your Meal Plan
Instructions
  1. Put garlic in Vitamix or food processor and pulse until chopped.
  2. Next add basil, and pulse again until it is broken down into small pieces.
  3. Add cashews and salt, and process on low (1-2 on a Vitamix) so that the cashews are broken into tiny pieces, but still maintain a little texture. If using cashews that haven't been soaked, you may want to process on a higher level to get a creamier consistency.
  4. Finally, with the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil until completely combined.
  5. Spoon into an airtight container.
  6. Can be used on pasta, as a dip, or in salad.
Recipe Notes

*Soaking cashews bring out the creamiest of textures. Simply put them in a bowl, cover with water, place a cover on the bowl, and let sit on the counter overnight or for at least 4 hours. (If you let them sit longer than overnight, refrigerate). When ready to use, simply drain.
If you forget to soak them, you can still make the pesto, but note that it will have a much different texture, and won't be as creamy.

Vegan Pesto

Vegan Cashew basil pesto

Cashew Basil Pesto 

 

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  1. So glad I happened upon this, it was exactly what I was hoping it would be! So incredibly easy and beyond delicious! I combined it with the half of a spaghetti squash I had sitting in the fridge, then topped that with a chopped up italian tofurky link and a quarter red onion that I fried and carmelized. It was so flavorful and satisfying and healthy!

    Just a little tip that I recently got hip to – if you don’t have time to soak your cashews, cover them with water in a sauce pan and parboil for 5-10 minutes. My cashew pesto was creamy as could be!

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