Go Back
+ servings
green pesto

Green Pesto Sauce

Everyone should have an easy green pesto sauce recipe in their arsenal. This is mine, which can be easily customized different herbs and/or leafy greens, nuts or seeds, and cheeses.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine: Italian, Mediterranean
Keyword: sauce, vegetarian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Makes: 2 cups
Cost: $7


  • Food processor


  • 3 tightly packed cups tender fresh herbs (mint, basil, parsley, cilantro, chives, etc.) and/or chopped leafy greens (kale, spinach, arugula, etc.)
  • ½ cup unsalted nuts or seeds (pine nuts, hazelnuts, pistachios, chopped almonds or walnuts, sunflower seeds, etc.)
  • 1 large clove garlic (or 2 small cloves), roughly chopped
  • ¾ cup grated parmesan, pecorino, or other hard aged cheese
  • teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus more as needed
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more as needed
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed


  • Combine the herbs or greens, nuts or seeds, garlic, cheese, lemon juice, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until everything is very finely chopped, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Pour the olive oil into the food processor, then puree until the pesto looks smooth and a bit creamy. If you like a looser pesto, add 1 or 2 more tablespoons of oil and process until smooth.
  • Taste the pesto and season as desired with more salt and/or lemon juice.
  • To store the pesto, transfer it to one or two airtight containers (this recipe makes enough for two 4-serving pasta meals). Press a piece of plastic wrap onto the surface of the pesto, then seal the container. Refrigerate the pesto for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 3 months.