Hands-on Time
10 Mins
Total Time
10 Mins
Makes 2 cups

Does anything taste quite as fresh as a good pesto? We think not. For a more vibrant and authentic flavor, feel free to use a mortar and pestle instead of a food processor. This basil pesto recipe is as versatile as it is delicious: toss it with pasta, stir it into rice or grits, or even use it as a dipping sauce.  

How to Make It

Process all ingredients in a food processor until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides as needed.

Ratings & Reviews

No lemon juice!

April 03, 2018
Lemon juice does not belong in pesto.

kitty2012's Review

June 20, 2012
My first time making pesto and it was a success! I omitted the salt altogether and found it to be fine; the cheese gives it plenty of salt. I also used minced garlic from a jar for convenience. The pesto is a bright green but needs to be covered with olive oil to prevent discoloration if it is not used immediately.

kvanselow's Review

September 13, 2012
No one in my family liked.

cindyreed851's Review

August 24, 2011
I panicked tonight when I couldn't find this recipe which I had torn from the June '11 issue of Southern Living. My son was coming for a visit and he loves it on all sandwiches--and I always send it home with him. Not to mention how wonderful it is on pasta and caprese! Thank goodness for southernliving.com.

ktbibou95's Review

August 05, 2014
Very easy, good, and tasty Pesto. The key is a good Food Processor.

andrea10's Review

August 19, 2012
Very easy to make with easy ingredients. Unfortunately, the cheese took over the entire taste, and even though I used only a 1/4 tsp of salt, it was still way too salty. I will try next time with 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese and no salt at all.

Hollybubba's Review

February 01, 2013
Love this recipe. I always make extra and freeze in ice cube trays then store the cubes in a freezer bag in the freezer to enjoy all winter long.

EICrabb's Review

June 08, 2014
This was delicious! Went a bit lighter on the cheese and used walnuts. Great!

CCassidy's Review

June 01, 2011
This is a very easy and delicious pesto recipe. I used it in orzo as a side dish and used the leftovers with a little olive oil drizzled over the top and pine nuts as a spread on italian bread.

slhaney1429's Review

October 29, 2011
This is a delicious pesto! I used less salt the second time I made it. Also, I used almonds instead of pine nuts and a little lighter on the garlic. Great results!!!