Walnut Pesto

Walnut pesto is in a jar ready to eat now on pasta or at later date.

Traditional pesto is made with pine nuts and basil. We’ve taken the recipe and added a bit of a twist, using walnuts instead. The flavor is still rich and amazing, and is perfect on pasta, pizza, or smeared onto grilled meats.

Partly due to the softness of the walnuts, this whole dish can be made in minutes by hand. This is unlike normal versions which all seem to require an electrical device to puree the sauce. The result is slightly chunkier, but this seems to add to the taste rather than detract.

Alternately it can be made at home and taken for a quick and easy meal, but ensure to keep cold. You can also prepare this ahead of time and freeze it in small batches to slowly defrost as you head outdoors. 

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A white bowl holds cooked spaghetti noodles with a light topping of walnut pesto.
This pesto is great tossed with hot noodles for a light pasta dish.
Looking at a white bowl holding cooked spaghetti tossed lightly with the walnut pesto.
You can use the walnut pesto on pasta, as a pizza sauce, or to top grilled chicken or fish.
Walnut pesto is in a jar ready to eat now on pasta or at later date.
Premade by hand, this chunky homemade walnut pesto can be eaten straight away or stored in a jar to be eaten in the next few days.
Ariel shot of cooked spaghetti noodles lightly tossed with walnut pesto in a white shallow bowl.
The texture of this hand-chopped pesto is a little chunkier than traditional versions.

Walnut Pesto Recipe

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Walnut pesto is in a jar ready to eat now on pasta or at later date.
Traditional pesto is made with pine nuts and basil. We've taken the recipe and added a bit of a twist, using walnuts instead.
Preparation 20 minutes
Cook 5 minutes
Ready in 25 minutes
Servings 6 Servings
CourseCondiment
InfluenceItaly
DifficultySeasoned
MethodNo Cook
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Ingredients

  • 3 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/3 cup toasted walnut halves
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ½ to 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Equipment

  • knife
  • jar
  • bowl

Directions

  • Bring a small pot of water to a boil then blanch the basil leaves. Immediately remove the basil and cool in ice water. When the basil leaves are cold, drain all the water off and press between a paper towel. Any remaining water will dilute the pesto.
    Tip: Blanching is the process of dropping the basil leaves into the boiling water for a few seconds until they start to wilt then immediately removing and placing them in ice (or very cold) water to stop the cooking process.
  • Dice the garlic, walnuts, and blanched basil. Place in a bowl. Add the Parmesan, salt, and olive oil.
  • Mix all the ingredients until they become well combined. Eat immediately or store in a jar to eat later.
    Not: Although we suggest storage in a jar, this is not a preserving technique and must be kept in a chilled location.

Nutritional Information

Sodium: 244mgCalcium: 102mgVitamin C: 2mgVitamin A: 706IUSugar: 1gFiber: 1gPotassium: 82mgCholesterol: 7mgCalories: 240kcalMonounsaturated Fat: 14gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 4gFat: 25gProtein: 4gCarbohydrates: 2gIron: 1mg

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About Ash Hodgson

When it comes to outdoor cooking Ash is a high-energy cook with a great attitude. Looking for tasty yet simple recipes has created an appealing recipe collection for the outdoors.

Learn more about Ash Hodgson
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