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5 Minute Basil Pesto

  A quick and healthy classic pesto that comes together in 5 minutes in a Vitamix or food processor! Perfect to be used as a marinade, sauce or spread on a sandwich!  A truly versatile dish that is a must to have on hand for those crazy week nights!

5 Minute Basil Pesto - Girl and the Kitchen

When shopping for the week, I always make sure I have certain go-to’s in the fridge to throw together a quick marinade, sauce or spread.  This 5 minute pesto serves as a an easy solution to all my cooking woes.

I have been using this pesto for years and it always served me well.  I have made it this classic way or I have subbed out the pine nuts for walnuts, the basil for arugula, either way it always ends up tasting amazing.

You can use this as a sandwich spread, mix into your eggs and create the classic green eggs and ham for the kiddos, use as a marinade for chicken breasts, use as a sauce for pasta.  When I use it with pasta, I simply add a touch of half and half and some pasta water to pull the sauce together.  Sprinkle with some Parmesan and you have a quick and healthy dinner for the family.

You can also add it to mayos for a quick pesto mayo.   Use it as a dip for some baked chicken fingers.  And let the kids go nuts over a greenish dip that they think “is so cool looking ” while secretly you will be thinking what a sneaky mom you are…because you know they are actually eating GREENS!

Make pesto smothered sammies is one of my faves!!! This one goes over really well in our house!

Pesto Chicken Caprese Sammy. Girl and the Kitchenv

The best part is it will literally come together in a few minutes and it stores really well in an airtight container in the fridge.

1. Add everything except the olive oil into your Vitamix or food processor.  You may want to shred the cheese before adding it to the food processor.  I add spinach leaves to mine because it makes it greener and it’s a way to sneak in spinach into our diets.

5 Minute Basil Pesto. Girl and the Kitchen

With the Vitamix or food processor on, stream in the olive oil until the consistency is to your liking.

5 Minute Basil Pesto. Girl and the Kitchen

That’s it!  Use it on whatever your pretty little heart desires.

5 Minute Basil Pesto. Girl and the Kitchen

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5 Minute Basil Pesto. Girl and the Kitchen-

5 Minute Basil Pesto


  • 3/4 cups Fresh Basil Leaves
  • 1 handful of baby spinach leaves
  • 1/2 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/4 cup Pine Nuts
  • 2 cloves Garlic (Peeled)
  • Salt And Pepper (to taste)
  • 1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 cup Grated Parmesan


  1. Add basil leaves, spinach leaves, 1/2 cup Parmesan, pine nuts, and salt and pepper to a food processor or blender.
  2. Turn machine on, then drizzle in olive oil while it mixes.
  3. Continue blending until combined, adding additional olive oil if needed.

***Originally posted June 12th 2013***

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  1. I LOVE how green this looks!! I’ve never actually made classic pesto, which I really need to do and this just looks delicious! I think the first time I attempted to make it, it turned out bitter… maybe because I processed the Olive Oil? Never tried it since… Now I have to! 🙂

    1. Sometimes it is bitter if the basil is old or the pine nuts are rancid! It’s super green because of the spinach 🙂

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