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Raw Pesto

Raw foodies often get a bad rap for drinking salads and eating #allthekale (both true). But that’s not everything raw foodies eat, and some of it is pretty delicious. As it gets warmer, I like to up my raw food intake. Not because I’m a raw vegan (or, ahem, vegan anything) but because it is delicious. One of my favorite things to spread over a veggie stir-fry, put on rice, or add to my avocado toast (so basic) is raw pesto The addition of nutritional yeast more than makes up for the missing Parmesan cheese – and this is a savory spread, sauce and even a dip.

Raw Pesto

Makes around 1 cup


1 c tightly-packed basil

3-4 medium garlic cloves (too large, and I’ve found that the flavor isn’t as intense)

1/3 c raw pine nuts

1/4 c olive oil

3 T nutritional yeast

1/4 – 1/2 t salt


1. In a food processor, combine the basil, garlic cloves and pine nuts and process until finely chopped (make sure the garlic is evenly distributed throughout the mixture).

2. Add the nutritional yeast, and process until combined.

3. Slowly drizzle the olive oil over the mixture while processing until the mixture is combined and desired texture is reached (you may not need all of the olive oil – watch the mixture and stop when your desired texture is reached.  You may want a thicker pesto for a dipping sauce or wrap, but a thinner pesto if using it as a sauce).

4. Season with salt to taste. I eat a lot of salt, so I prefer the heavier end of the salt range.

This pesto will last 2 weeks in the fridge or up to 6 months in the freezer.  You can even make frozen pesto pops in an ice cube tray so I can pop one out for a single-serving without defrosting an entire batch.

46 thoughts on “Raw Pesto Leave a comment

    • Understand that – I like the pesto pops because they are the perfect serving size – so I don’t go crazy with the oil!


  1. Looks great, Laura. I went to make your chickpea balls the other day and to my dismay I was out of PB. But I think I have the ingredients for this. Gonna try it!

    Note: I changed my blog name *again* – I need help.


    • Out of PB? That never last long at my place!

      And a new name? That’s sort of what is awesome about blogging, right? We get to change whenever we want. The only reason I don’t is that I don’t want to be confusing people with my whims… At least, no more than I normally do!


    • Oh my goodness, it is seriously one of my favorite things of all time! Seriously. Even before I was veg, I found excuses to put it on anything and everything!


  2. These are great ingredients for pesto Laura! This is the second time that I’ve heard of nutritional yeast. I’m curious if it’s like a probiotic or something like that? Does it bring good bacteria into your body? I see that you said it’s more of a cheesy flavor…and that’s very cool! I’m intrigued… πŸ™‚
    This sounds delicious, I’d totally eat this over pasta, or as a dip for veggies! I’m so glad you brought this to the table on Fiesta Friday! Thank you for sharing it with everyone…I know they’ll all love it! πŸ™‚


    • So I should know what it is – and I know I do, I just can’t remember it right now! πŸ™‚ Let me find a link and get it back to you!


  3. I definitely eat much more raw food as the weather warms up, and nothing beats a solid pesto recipe. This one looks fantastic! Makes me hungry just thinking about it. Oh, I just can’t wait until I can buy basil by the bushel again…


  4. I love pesto and could eat it on pretty much anything! This sounds yummy too. Sometimes I substitute stock for some of the oil to lower the fat a little bit- then I don’t feel guilty dousing my veggies or pizza with it πŸ™‚


  5. Yum! There is nothing that doesn’t taste great with pesto. The smell and taste of it instantly transports me to summertime.


  6. An old follower, but new to the fiesta! Glad to see another delicious option I could munch on. I’ve never made my own pesto, but from the comments (and your post), it looks simple enough for me to try πŸ™‚


  7. I love pesto!! Where do you get your nutritional yeast? (sorry for all the questions, I’m just really starting to like this whole vegan thing!)


    • I love your questions! I buy nutritional yeast from – but if you are close to a Whole Foods (or other similar store) I bet they have it there!


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