The first thing I learned how to cook as a child was pasta – easy enough right? When I was first introduced to pesto, I completely fell in love. The bright aroma of basil with a slight kick from garlic is the perfect combination. It tastes gourmet AF but is actually so easy to make. Pesto is typically made with parmesan cheese, pine nuts, and LOTS of olive oil which makes it quite heavy so I decided to make a version that’s more on the lighter side.
Perfect for your late-summer basil harvest, just pop all the ingredients in a food processor, and freeze to enjoy through the colder months. The hemp hearts and nutritional yeast take the place of the pine nuts and cheese, making this recipe vegan and nut allergy friendly. If I didn’t tell you these ingredients were missing, you probably wouldn’t even notice!
basil & hemp heart pesto [dairy & nut free]
fresh basil — 1 large bunch, leaves removed
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 – 4 tablespoons hemp hearts
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
juice of 1/2 a lemon
salt + pepper to taste
In a food processor or high-speed blender, blend all ingredients until incorporated. Adjust seasonings to your taste. It’s as easy as that!
Transfer to a small glass jar and keep refrigerated for up to two weeks. Alternatively, you can freeze the pesto in an ice cube tray for easy portioning.
Use with pasta, as a dip for roasted veggies, in place of tomato sauce on pizza…the possibilities are endless! What’s your favourite way to enjoy pesto?