Nut-free pesto is a recipe you are going to want to save so you can use over and over again. It will go well with many of your other dishes, and it tastes phenomenal. I even give you tips on how to make it dairy-free too! This is wonderful for dinner parties or just a night at home.
The star of the show is the sunflower seeds in this amazing sauce. They add a wonderful flavor and go so deliciously with the parmesan, basil, lemon, garlic, olive oil, and seasonings. If you have been looking for a pesto recipe without pine nuts, this is your recipe!!
If you love to use fresh herbs as I do, you will want to check out this article on How to Use Fresh Herbs in Your Cooking.
Not going to lie, I think I might be addicted to this nut-free pesto recipe because it’s so good and super EASY to throw together. You can top your favorite steak recipe, dip some bread in it or eat it on pasta. No matter how you serve it, every drop gets eaten in the Fearless Dining household.
Fresh Homemade Sauces
I think one reason why I love this nut-free pesto sauce recipe is that I enjoy growing my own herbs. There is just something rewarding about using food that you have grown yourself. Making a pesto without pine nuts is easier than you may think! You can even grow your own fresh herbs in your kitchen to use in this recipe!!
If you love this nut-free pesto recipe, check out some of my other delicious sauces.
- How To Make Balsamic Vinegar Reduction
- How To Make A Simple Alfredo Sauce
- Olallieberry Sauce With Thyme
Sunflower seeds substitute for pine nuts!
The hero of this nut-free pesto recipe is the sunflower seeds. They add the “texture” and nuttiness this pesto recipe needs. It is so easy to make a delicious pesto without nuts!!
The other must in this recipe is fresh basil. Basil is one of the most versatile herbs to use and it is delicious in recipes like this Grilled Steak with Fresh Basil Pesto Sauce and this Stacked Heirloom Tomato Salad.
Are you ready to make this yummy sauce?
- Sunflower seeds
- Parmesan (or omit if going dairy-free)
- Olive oil
How to make nut-free pesto:
Add the fresh basil, sesame seeds, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, and parmesan to a food processor and blend until the seeds and basil are sauce-like. That is it…super easy!
Have Questions about this recipe?
I like to try to guess what questions you will have and try to answer them so you don’t have to message me and wait for an answer.
Can Pesto Go Bad?
Yes, pesto can go bad. This homemade pesto recipe will last around 1 week in the fridge. You shouldn’t let the pesto sit on the counter, or it will go bad rather quickly too. If you notice that the pesto has begun turning brown that is a good indication it’s time to toss it. It won’t taste good at that point either, so you wouldn’t even want to eat it.
Can You Freeze Pesto?
Yes, you can freeze pesto. Either put it in freezer-safe bags, an airtight container or freeze into ice cubes. If you go the ice cube route, you can pop them out of the ice cube container and place them in freezer bags. Then just grab what you need. Set it on the counter for a few minutes to defrost it. Then use it as you normally would. It will last around 6 months in the freezer.
Is This Nut-Free Pesto Vegetarian?
Yes, you can eat this nut-free pesto if you eat a vegetarian diet. If you omit the parmesan cheese, you can even make it vegan too.
What To Do If Pesto Is Too Thick?
If you run into having too thick of pesto, you can easily fix this issue by adding a little bit of olive oil. I recommend starting with 1 teaspoon at a time until it reaches the consistency you are looking for. If you notice it’s too thin, you can always add some more basil or sunflower seeds.
Why Is My Homemade Pesto Bitter?
While you shouldn’t normally have a problem with bitter pesto, it does happen once in a while. If this happens to you, it is probably due to the basil. The best way to combat that is to add in some fresh spinach leaves to the nut-free pesto. It will take away the bitterness and allow it to still be edible.
What can you put this pesto on?
- Add it to this Roasted Red Pepper Italian Panini.
- Layer it in this dreamy Low Carb Lasagna.
- Top this Grilled Halibut Steak with pesto.
- Try it with this Crispy Baked Eggplant recipe.
- Add a dollop to this yummy White Bean Hummus.
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves
- 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
- 3 tablespoons parmesan
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- Add all ingredients to a food processor and blend until mostly smooth.
- Enjoy :-).
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 71 Total Fat: 7g Saturated Fat: 1g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 5g Cholesterol: 2mg Sodium: 357mg Carbohydrates: 2g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 0g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 2g