If you're a fan of pesto you have to try this easy Almond Pesto! It takes just minutes to make with a handful of ingredients. Plus it can be used in so many ways as a sauce, dip and spread. This pesto recipe without pine nuts is definitely a keeper.
Pesto is an absolute staple in my house and the traditional ingredients are of course basil, pine nuts, garlic, olive oil and Parmesan cheese.
Unsurprisingly this recipe came about one day when I'd run out of pine nuts. Can you make pesto with no pine nuts? Absolutely - and it still tastes divine.
What's more, almonds are a less expensive option and you're more likely to already have them in your pantry.
Why You Should Make This Almond Pesto?
- Almond Pesto is the ultimate easy fast food which comes together in minutes.
- In my experience kids love pesto! A spoon of pesto seems to magically help the veggies go down, which is probably why it gets served so often in my house.
- Pesto is just so useful. Perfect as a sauce with pasta, chicken and grilled meats, and also delicious as a spread or dip - is there anything it doesn't go with?
- Pesto also freezes like a dream - so it's a great make ahead dish.
- If you love pesto as much as I do why not try my Easy Kale Pesto for a different twist.
How to Make Basil Pesto with Almond:
Find the full printable recipe below.
Grind the almonds and garlic to small pieces in a food processor.
Add the basil leaves, cheese and salt and process until chopped but still chunky.
With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil.
Season again if needed and add a little water if you want a runnier pesto.
What other nuts can I use for Pesto?
Whilst pine nuts are traditionally used in Pesto, you can substitute them with any other raw nut, like I've done here with almonds.
Walnuts, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pistachios, pecans and even peanuts can make a delicious homemade pesto.
Don't stop at nuts either, a handful of seeds like pumpkin, sunflower or sesame can also be added to the mix.
Can I make Pesto without a Food Processor?
A food processor does make pesto in minutes which is great for whipping up a quick mid week dinner. This pesto is actually made in less than the time it takes to boil a pot of pasta!
However, if you don't own a food processor, no problem. You can make my great tasting pesto recipe with almonds using either a blender, a stick blender or with a little extra elbow grease and a pestle and mortar.
Variations of Almond Pesto:
- Aside from swapping out the almonds for other nuts, you can also use other herbs to make pesto. Parsley, cilantro, mint, tarragon and oregano are great substitutes, or try a blend of different herbs.
- Don't be limited to just using herbs either, you can add leafy greens to a pesto. Spinach, swiss chard, kale and wild garlic (ramp) leaves all make great tasting homemade pesto.
- To make Almond Pesto vegetarian, just use a vegetarian equivalent of Parmesan cheese.
Tips For Making the Best Almond Pesto
This is a really adaptable sauce so use what you have in your refrigerator and larder.
Once made, put the pesto into a jar with a tight fitting lid and store it in the refrigerator. It will keep there for up to 5 days.
If you like a runnier pesto add a splash of water to the mixture.
How To Serve Almond Basil Pesto?
This is a versatile sauce, and for a quick mid week dinner I like to serve it stirred through some freshly cooked pasta and topped with a little grated Parmesan cheese.
Spread some pesto over salmon fillets, top with breadcrumbs and bake in the oven for a great tasting baked salmon dish.
Stir a spoon of pesto through your Italian Minestrone Soup for an added punch of flavor.
The flavors in pesto work well with vegetables, seafood and chicken. The list of uses is endless, so get creative.
How To Reheat Basil Pesto with Almonds?
Pesto is a flavorful sauce and is stirred through a pasta sauce rather than cooked. It is best served fresh as reheating will cause the basil to darken and you will lose that lovely green vibrancy.
How to Freeze Pesto?
My almond basil pesto is really easy to freeze. Double up the recipe, using some now and freezing the rest for later. Simply decant the sauce into airtight containers and put in the freezer where it will store for up to 3 months.
Pin This Almond Pesto Recipe For Later
What Do You Think?!
Scroll to the comments section and let me know what you think about the recipe. Did you try it? Did you adapt it? Did you love it?
More Easy Sauces & Side Recipe Ideas
- ¼ cup Whole Almonds
- 1 clove Garlic
- 3 cups Fresh Basil Leaves
- ½ cup Grated Parmesan or Vegetarian Alternative
- ½ tsp Sea Salt
- ½ cup Olive Oil
- Black Pepper
- dash Water - optional
- Place the almonds and garlic into a food processor and pulse until everything is ground into small pieces.
- Add the basil leaves, cheese and salt and pulse again, until everything is finely minced. Be careful not to over process and make the sauce too smooth.
- With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil.
- Taste and season again if needed. If you like a runnier pesto add a dash or two of water and stir again.