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Easy Vegan Pesto

Easy Vegan Pesto (Quick + Delicious)

The Pesky Vegan
This easy vegan pesto is creamy, cheesy, and garlicky, and can be thrown together in a matter of minutes. It’s perfect for pasta, pizza, toast, salad dressings, marinades, and so much more.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Sauce
Cuisine Gluten-free, Vegan
Servings 10
Calories 79 kcal


  • 3 cups (2 oz / 60 g) fresh basil
  • 3 large cloves garlic, peeled
  • 4 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 4-5 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 green chilli, top removed (optional)
  • Juice of 1 lemon (if you like lemon, include some zest)
  • 3-4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4-6 tablespoons water (plus more if needed)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Add all the ingredients (except the water) to a food processor and blend into a paste. You may need to stop once or twice to scrape down the sides with a spatula or spoon.
  • Add the water a little at a time and blend to loosen up the paste. The pesto should be thick, but should also fall off a spoon quite easily.
  • Adjust the seasoning to taste and you're good to go.


Serving suggestions: This pesto is perfect when mixed through freshly cooked pasta such as linguine or spaghetti. To make an even creamier sauce, combine the pesto with a little homemade cashew cream.
It's also great for spreading on toast, adding to salad dressings, marinating other ingredients, or mixing through hummus
Nuts: You can either omit the pine nuts and enjoy the pesto as a thinner sauce, or replace them with your favourite plant seeds, such as sunflower, pumpkin, or hemp. 
Nutritional yeast: You can simply omit the nutritional yeast or use a vegan parmesan cheese. If you want to replicate the sharp flavour of dairy parmesan, you could try adding a tablespoon of vegan Dijon mustard or cider vinegar. 
Basil: You could swap out some or all of the basil for other greens such as parsley, coriander, spinach, kale, watercress, rocket, or mixed salad leaves. 
Chilli: If you don't like heat, skip the chilli. I just like the extra zing it adds. 
Less fat: Extra-virgin olive oil is a key ingredient in a good pesto. However, if you want to make it healthier you could swap out the oil for extra water. 
Storage: You can store this pesto in the fridge for up to a week or freezer for up to six months. 
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* The nutrition info below is for one serving of the pesto sauce, based on a total of ten servings. 


Calories: 79kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 3gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 16mgPotassium: 105mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 317IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 12mgIron: 1mg
Nutrition Facts
Easy Vegan Pesto (Quick + Delicious)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 79 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 16mg1%
Potassium 105mg3%
Carbohydrates 3g1%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 317IU6%
Vitamin C 2mg2%
Calcium 12mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword dairy-free pesto, easy vegan recipe, quick vegan recipe
Did you make this recipe?Leave a comment down below or tag me on Instagram @thepeskyvegan along with the hashtag #thepeskyvegan