Vegan pesto is an incredibly versatile sauce that can be enjoyed in countless ways. In addition to mixing it into pasta, noodles, rice and spiralized vegetables, you can also use it as a dip for crackers and crudités or a topping for toast, pizza, salad, and baked potatoes! This vegan pesto is super easy to make –– just blend everything together and you're done! Nutritional yeast gives it a cheesy flavor without any dairy! While this recipe uses pine nuts, you can also substitute seeds for a nut-free version! Don't buy another expensive jar of pesto, just make this vegan pesto! It's so delicious and much fresher!

Easy Peasy Pine Nut and Basil Pesto [Vegan, Gluten-Free]






  • 1/4 cup raw pine nuts or pistachios or pumpkin seeds for nut-free
  • 4 cups fresh basil, well packed
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast (or substitute vegan Parmesan cheese)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • juice from 1/2 to 1 large lemon
  • 1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt, adjusted to taste
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional as needed for desired consistency


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and spread pine nuts on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.  Bake for 4 to 5 minutes until just browned, shaking halfway through so they toast evenly.  Cool.
  2. To a food processor or blender container add cooled nuts, basil, nutritional yeast, garlic, juice from 1/2 lemon, and 1/4 tsp salt.  Blend well.
  3. With processor/blender running, slowly drizzle in the oil and process until well combined, stopping to scrape the bottom and sides with a spatula as needed.
  4. Add additional seasoning, lemon juice, or olive oil as needed for desired taste and consistency.


This pesto can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 1 to 2 weeks or frozen for several months. I like to freeze it using an ice cube tray so that it’s easy to thaw in single-serving portions.