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Homemade pesto sauce in a jar with a spoon scooping some out

Homemade Pesto Sauce

Easy, beautiful, bright homemade pesto sauce with lots of fresh basil, parmesan cheese, and toasted nuts.
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people
Calories 172 kcal


  • 4 packed cups fresh basil leaves 100 g
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • the zest of one small lemon
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2/3 cup toasted pine nuts, cooled
  • pinch red chili flakes
  • 1 cup good quality olive oil


  • In the bowl of a food processor or blender, add all the ingredients from the basil leaves through to the red chili flakes (everything except the olive oil).
  • Blend to combine until basil is chopped up. Then, drizzle in the olive oil while blending until all the olive oil is added and a paste with some texture forms. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
  • Store in a tightly covered jar covered with a thin layer of olive oil in the fridge for up to 2 weeks, or freeze for up to 6 months (instructions in the post)


Recipe loosely adapted from Cookie and Kate
Keyword pesto, sauce