Homemade Italian Pesto Recipe

Italian pesto is an incredibly flavorful and versatile Italian condiment that can be easily made at home with a few basic ingredients. Pesto has a unique nutty flavor and a vibrant green color that makes it stand out as a topping for all sorts of dishes, from simple spaghetti, pizza and bruschetta to more complex preparations. Traditional Italian pesto is made with basil, garlic, Parmesan, extra virgin olive oil and pine nuts. This easy recipe will show you how to make a delicious Italian pesto sauce at home that can be served with all sorts of pasta dishes and sandwiches. Give it a try and you’ll never look back!


  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Combine the basil, Parmesan, garlic, olive oil and pine nuts in the bowl of a food processor.
  2. Pulse a few times until the pesto is blended, but still slightly chunky.
  3. Taste and season with salt and pepper, if desired.
  4. Transfer the pesto to a jar or container and store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
  5. Serve over your favorite pasta dishes, sandwiches and more!

Making Italian pesto at home is surprisingly easy and requires very few ingredients. The key to a great traditional pesto is to find the freshest basil and use top-quality extra virgin olive oil, as well as fresh chopped garlic and grated Parmesan cheese. Pine nuts are typically found in the bulk section of the grocery store, and can also be found in the baking aisle. You can adjust the seasonings to taste, adding a bit more garlic or Parmesan cheese if you like.

This easy pesto sauce is incredibly versatile – it’s a great topping for spaghetti, salads and sandwiches, and can also be used as a flavorful accompaniment to protein dishes such as chicken and fish. My personal favorite use for this sauce is to top a simple homemade pizza. Combined with some mozzarella cheese, it’s a delicious and flavorful way to enjoy pizza night at home!

Buon appetito!