We usually make this pesto when we’re making Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Vegan Italian Sausage Pasta but it can actually be used for mostly all pesto-based dishes.
This pesto is packed with fresh basil leaves that have such an herby, earthy, fresh aroma. In addition to its wonderful flavor, basil is one of the healthiest herbs you can use. It’s rich in vitamin K, vitamin A, and has many powerful antioxidants. Basil also includes iron, calcium, manganese, magnesium, vitamin C and potassium.
As if that wasn’t enough, basil has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It also contains DNA-protecting flavonoids. I’m no scientist but flavonoids are good! The flavonoids and oils in basil protect our cells and chromosomes from radiation and oxygen-based damage – THAT’S AMAZING.
If biology has your head spinning, just know – basil tastes good and is good for you too. Blended with fresh lemon, garlic, cashews, olive oil and a splash of almond milk – it makes a wonderful, simple, creamy 100% VEGAN pesto.
It’s really so simple, just place all ingredients into a food processor or high-speed blender and blend for about 2 minutes. You can add more almond milk if you want a creamier consistency or more lemon juice if you like the brightness it adds.
We don’t soak our cashews for this one and it works out just fine but, I could imagine that using soaked or boiled cashews might even add extra creaminess. Let us know in the comments if you try it that way!
*UPDATE* We added a recipe for oil-free basil pesto to our blog. Check it out!
This lemon basil pesto is earthy, aromatic, and bright. With only six simple ingredients, blending this up is quick and easy.
- 1 big handful fresh basil leaves
- 1/3 cup raw cashews
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoon unsweetened almond milk start with 2 but add more if it looks like you'll need more liquid
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 cloves fresh garlic
- 1 teaspoon salt + pepper each
Place all ingredients into a food processor or high speed blender. Blend on high for 2 minutes.