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Photo: Dana Gallagher Photo by: Photo: Dana Gallagher

Pesto Topping

Real Simple NOVEMBER 2004

  • Yield: Makes 2 cups


  • 3 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 3 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for storing


Combine the basil, Parmesan, pine nuts, and garlic in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. With the machine running, pour in a thin, steady stream of the oil, blending until the mixture is well combined and emulsified. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container covered with a thin layer of oil (to preserve the color) for up to 1 week. Sprinkle with additional Parmesan (and basil leaves, if you wish) just before serving. (This can be made 2 to 3 days in advance and kept in the freezer for up to 2 months.) Note: To make this recipe even simpler, buy prepared pesto and spruce it up at home with chopped pine nuts and freshly grated Parmesan before serving.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calcium: 24mg
  • Calories: 133
  • Calories from fat: 97%
  • Carbohydrate: 1g
  • Cholesterol: 1mg
  • Fat: 15g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Iron: 0mg
  • Protein: 1mg
  • Saturated fat: 2g
  • Sodium: 15mg

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Pesto Topping Recipe