Vegan Basil Pesto (Quick And Easy Nondairy Pesto)

This is the best nondairy pesto out there! My vegan basil pesto recipe could actually be the best way to make a vegan pesto sauce. Forget the parm and check out this delicious, quick, and easy sauce that everyone can enjoy! Floral notes from the basil and toasted nuttiness from the pine nuts. You will be amazed how mush this vegan basil pesto sauce tastes like the real thing!

Traditional pesto is made with very similar ingredients. The only thing we are doing different is swapping out the parmesan for nutritional yeast. So, this vegan pesto sauce is as close to the traditional sauce that you can get!

Although, if you want to make an authentic basil pesto with parmesan, but still want to keep it vegan, check out my shredable vegan parmesan recipe here!

I LOVE this vegan basil pesto because its

  • Easy
  • Delicious
  • Versatile
  • Creamy
  • Quick
  • VEGAN

Vegan Basil Pesto Ingredients

nondairy pesto ingredients on a cutting board close up shot.

Basil– can’t make vegan basil pesto sauce without this ingredient!

Pinenuts– add a beautiful nutty flavor and amazing creaminess to this nondairy pesto

Nutritional Yeast– this is how we replicate the cheesy flavor!

Lemon Juice– just the right amount of bright fresh acidity

Olive Oil– tie all the ingredients together with a delicious olive oil

How To Use a Nondairy Pesto

  1. Pasta! Duh! The primary use of a vegan basil pesto is to coat your favorite pasta with it! I love having little vegan pesto in the fridge ready to go just in case I want a delicious pasta dish on the fly! Here’s a simple, yet, delicious pasta recipe using a nondairy pesto!
  2. Use this vegan basil pesto sauce on your favorite vegan bread! This sauce is a perfect accompaniment for a slice of sourdough bread, toast, grilled naan, etc.! Check out some of my vegan bread recipes!
  3. Sourdough Bread Recipe
  4. Vegan Naan Bread
  • Mix this vegan pesto with some vegan mayonnaise and make a delicious dipping sauce! If you want to make a super easy vegan mayonnaise, then check out my recipe here!
  • Last but not least, use this vegan pesto sauce on your vegan pizza! There’s nothing better than pizza and I know your friend and family feel the same! Check out this vegan basil pesto pizza from the savory vegan!
  • Use this nondairy pesto as a salad dressing! Its delicious with hearty greens like kale, chard and even bok choy!
vegan basil pesto aerial shot in a glass jar

How Do You Make Vegan Basil Pesto?

It doesn’t get any easier than this! To make this quick and easy vegan basil pesto you simply gather and measure all of your ingredients. Then you combine them in a food processor and blend them util smooth! Its as easy as that and it probably will take you 5 minutes tops!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does vegan basil pesto last?

This vegan pesto sauce will last up to a week in the fridge. Be sure to keep it in a sealed airtight container!

Can you freeze a nondairy pesto?

This vegan basil pesto sauce actually freezes really well. Make sure you keep it in an airtight container or vacuum sealed bag and you can store it in the freezer for up to 6 months.

How can I tell if pesto has gone bad?

There first sign of a bad pesto is a dark green color. The pesto may still be good, but I don’t chance it once it has turned from its bright green color. Another sign of spoilage is an off putting smell. If it doesn’t smell good, then toss it!

Does pesto typically have dairy?

A traditional basil pesto does have parmesan in it, so it is definitely not vegan. Since we omit that ingredient from this recipe, it makes it a vegan nondairy pesto.

What can i use instead of cheese in pesto?

in this recipe we swap out the parmesan cheese with nutritional yeast, but you can also use white miso to achieve that cheesy and creamy flavor! I like using Hikari white miso paste, its super flavorful!

Vegan basil pesto on a white plate with toasted Pine nuts spread around.
vegan basil pesto in a glass jar on a white plate with sauce on the side to show consistency.

Vegan Basil Pesto

Chef Mason Bostwick
Delicious and versatile sauce for any meal! This nondairy pesto is super creamy, herbatious, and full of flavor.
Prep Time 3 mins
Total Time 4 mins
Course Condiment, Enhancement
Cuisine Mediterranean, Vegan
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
  

  • 2 Cups Basil picked
  • ½ Cup Pinenuts toasted
  • 2 Cloves Garlic chopped
  • ¼ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ¼ Cup Grapeseed Oil
  • 3 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 Ea Lemon juiced & zested
  • TT Sea Salt

Instructions
 

  • In a food processor combine all the ingredients, except extra virgin olive oil and grapeseed oil, and pulse until ingredients are ground. You may have to stop and scrape the sides of the food processor to get a uniform mince.
  • Next, slowly add oil into the food processor while its running until all the oil is emulsified into the mixture.
  • Taste the vegan basil pesto to check for seasoning. Season with sea salt and additional lemon if needed.
Keyword nondairy pesto, vegan basil pesto, vegan pesto sauce

Vegan Basil Pesto (Standardized Version)

Prep Time: 5 Minutes

Yield: 1 Cup

Ingredients

2             Cups      Basil, picked

½            Cup        Pinenuts, toasted

2             Cloves   Garlic, chopped

¼            Cup        Extra Virgin Olive Oil

¼            Cup        Grapeseed Oil

3             Tbsp       Nutritional Yeast

1             Ea           Lemon, juiced & zested

TT                          Sea Salt

Instructions

  1. In a food processor combine all the ingredients, except extra virgin olive oil and grapeseed oil, and pulse until ingredients are ground. You may have to stop and scrape the sides of the food processor to get a uniform mince.
  2. Next, slowly add oil into the food processor while its running until all the oil is emulsified into the mixture.
  3. Taste the vegan basil pesto to check for seasoning. Season with sea salt and additional lemon if needed.

If you like this vegan basil pesto sauce, then you should check out some of my other vegan sauces!

Vegan Thai Red Curry Paste

Vegan Korean BBQ Sauce

Herb Aioli

Simple Spanish Sofrito Recipe

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